We have compiled a list of answers to the most frequently asked questions concerning Mount Kilimanjaro Climbs. If you have any question that is not included here or there is an answer that needs further explanation to you, please feel free and get in-touch with our experts.
Q: When is the best time to climb Mt. Kilimanjaro?
Even though one can climb Kilimanjaro throughout the year, January, February and September are regarded as the best months. During the rainy season in March – May and October / November the chances for the peak to be snowcapped are high and the trails are relatively empty, but you will also face climbing in rain every day and miss out some wonderful views.
Q: Does climbing the Kilimanjaro involve technicalities?
Not at all, Kilimanjaro does not involve any technicalities. Any person in good physical condition can climb and reach the summit.
- You should be able to run for half an hour or more without feeling short of breath.
- No one with a sore throat, cold or breathing problems should go above 3000 meters.
- People with heart or lung problems should not attempt the mountain at all without consulting their doctors.
- Being in the right mental state is important. Do not push yourself to go if your body is exhausted, or if you have extreme mountain sickness or more serious symptoms.
Q: Are all the Kilimanjaro Park fees included?
Yes, both our Kilimanjaro and Safari prices include park fees and all other applicable fees and government taxes
Q: Do your Tanzania trips include any transfer for those arriving in Nairobi, Kenya?
Yes, we include a free shuttle transfer Nairobi-Arusha-Nairobi for those arriving/departing from Nairobi. (Notify us during booking of you trip)
Please be advised that there are 2 daily bus shuttle transfers between Nairobi and Arusha; leaving from either place at 08:00hrs and 14:00hrs and arriving to the other destination at 12:30hrs and 18:30hrs respectively. We can pick you up from either Nairobi airport or most hotels located in or near Nairobi City center. You need to be ready at least half an hour before the scheduled times.
Please be advised that the most convenient airport will be Kilimanjaro International Airport (JRO).
Q: Can children climb Kilimanjaro?
The minimum age limit set by the National Park Authorities for trekking to Uhuru Peak is 12 years old. However, children are permitted on day trips that don’t ascend too far up the trail; 3000m above sea level.
Q: What is the weather like on Mt. Kilimanjaro?
Equatorial to arctic conditions are present on the Kilimanjaro. The range begins with the warm, dry plains with average temperatures of 30ºC; ascends through a wide belt of wet tropical forest, through zones with generally decreasing temperatures and rainfall, to the summit where there is permanent ice and below freezing temperatures. The temperature at the top of the mountain gets as Low as -25ºC
Q: How long does it take to reach the summit?
Climbing through the Marangu route, one can reach the summit in 5 or 6 days, including a day and a half of descending. On the Machame, Lemosho, and other routes it is normal for one to reach the summit in 6 or 7 days including a day and a half of descending.
Q: What kind of climbing gear do I need?
Have a look at our Kilimanjaro packing list for a full guide on what to park for a Kilimanjaro climb. Some of the gear required for your Kilimanjaro climb can be rented from Awland Safaris (Notify us in advance to know what is available for rent)
Q: Can we leave excess luggage behind whilst on trekking?
Yes, you can leave excess luggage which you do not need to carry with you up the mountain at your hotel, or in our office. Valuable items including cash should be specified.
Q: How do I cope with change of altitude?
As you ascend, the oxygen in the air decreases. Low oxygen in the blood causes shortness of breath during exertion, increased ventilation and heart-beats. You can acclimatize/adapt to the altitude by ascending slowly and pacing yourself.
Q: Are rescue facilities available?
Yes. Only Marangu route has a reliable, equipped rescue team. Rescue services on other routes are done by contacting the Park Headquarters who will then quickly send the rescue team. The mountain rescue fees covers rescue service from the top to the base of the mountain, we recommend getting flying doctor service membership (a $50 value) to cover from the base of the mountain to your hospital.
Q: What kind of accommodation is provided for the 2 nights included in the climbing package?
The accommodation is at a mid-class hotel that has rooms with en-suite bathrooms, mosquito nets, a bar and a restaurant. It is located in a quiet neighborhood. For those who prefer something fancier, we can upgrade this to a five star hotel with an extra few dollars
Q: What kind of accommodation is available during climbing?
Only Marangu route offers accommodation in dormitory style huts; having beds and mattresses. All other routes offer accommodation in tents. The number of climbers on Marangu Route is limited to availability of a accommodation, therefore advance booking is a necessity.
Q: What's the food like during the climb?
Our typical food on the mountain includes breakfast, lunch and dinner with a variety of snacks in between meals. Our cooks use the freshest seasonal produce that is sourced locally whenever possible; we cater for both vegetarian and non-vegetarian climbers.
Have a look at our sample Kilimanjaro Menu guide
Q: Do you accommodate people with dietary restrictions?
Absolutely! Our skilled cooks are happy to accommodate your dietary restrictions and/or allergies. Just let us know of your dietary restrictions in advance.
Q: Who prepares the food on the mountain?
Skilled cooks will prepare food for you. Also, they will boil, filter and refill your empty water bottles.
Q: How is cooking done on the mountain?
All our meals are prepared on portable kerosene and gas stoves by our skilled cooks. Our low-impact policy prohibits the use of firewood on the mountain.
Q: What about drinking water?
We recommend you drink about 4 -5 liters of fluid each day. Water is best, but fruit juices are a good supplement. Carry your own water bottle at all times, as dehydration is a real problem on the mountain. The air is very dry above 4000 meters so avoid panting and try to breathe through your nose. Control sweating by wearing removable clothing and pacing yourself. Sip fluids frequently and monitor your urine; output should be at least 1.5 liters per day and the urine should be clear.
Q: Can we buy drinking water/soda on the Kilimanjaro?
Yes, drinking water and soda can be bought on the mountain in Marangu route, it is however much more expensive than in Moshi town.
Our staff will boil, filter and refill your water bottles on a daily basis; there will therefore be enough water for you up the mountain. The guides will also carry a flask of sweet tea while on the trail.
Q: What is the number of climbers?
Our climbs have a minimum and maximum number of 1 and 15 climbers respectively. In most cases, we have a maximum of 10 climbers, and average of 4 climbers
Q: How many guides, porters and cooks do we get?
All depends on the number of people in your group. You will have a leading guide, with assistant guides, and porters (including cooks). We guarantee enough number of staff to assist you successfully climb Kilimanjaro.
Q: Do you have luggage (weight/size/number) limitations on your climbs?
Unlike most other Companies, We do NOT have luggage limitation on our climbs. We also provide free storage for stuff which you do not want to bring with you up on the mountain.
Q: What if one of us gets sick and has to return?
In case one person gets sick and has to stay behind or even return, he or she will be accompanied by one of the assistant guides while other climbers go on with the leading guide and other assistant guide(s).
Q: Do you provide a free transfer if a climber had to return earlier than a scheduled day?
Unlike most other Companies who charge about $100, we provide a free transfer from the mountain to the hotel should a climber return earlier than planned.
Q: What shots should I get?
For medical advice it is always best to consult your doctor. Please contact Tanzania embassy in your country for any updated information on minimum requirement to get into Tanzania/ Kenya if any.
Q: Can you include airfare?
Only for prior arrangement with consensus of client and Awland Safaris.
Q: What additional costs can I expect when I travel with you?
Our Land cost prices include almost everything. The only extra costs you will incur are tips, cost of some of the climbing gears, and meals that are not listed on your itinerary as well as personal shopping and expenses.
Q: How much is a good tip?
Have a look at our Kilimanjaro tipping guide for more information on our tipping recommendation.
Q: Will I have a chance to interact with the local people of Tanzania?
Absolutely! You can even start interacting with some of our staff at our offices; they were born in Kilimanjaro region, raised there, climbed the mountain several times and know it than anybody else! If you wish you can also add an extra day before or after your climb for a cultural tour to learn more about local tribes and traditions.
Q: Is my payment going to help local African Communities?
Absolutely! We are a 100% tanzanian owned company and employ exclusively local guides, porters and cooks. A great part of your payment therefore goes back to the local communities and helps sustain them.
Q: Can I use credit card to pay for my climb?
Not presently, we accept payments payable by cheque, bank transfer or cash
Q: What is the deposit amount to hold my space?
We do require a deposit of at least 30 percent of the climbing cost for Kilimanjaro trekking bookings.
Q: When do I need to pay the balance of my trip?
The balance is due 90 days prior to the day your tour commences.
Q: What happens if I need to cancel my trip?
If you cancel a tour, then the following cancellation penalties will apply:
Cancellation penalties per person as follows:
- Up to 30 days prior to departure - 20% of total purchase amount
- 29-14 days prior to departure – 50% of total purchase amount.
- Less than 14 days prior to departure - 100% of total purchase amount.
Note: Should the canceling party be able to find a replacement for themselves no less than 14 days prior to departure and the replacement completes this booking form individually, no cancellation fee. However, should no replacement be found by 14 days prior to departure, a 100% cancellation penalty will apply to the canceling party.
There is 6% handling fee add-on to the above penalties.
Q: What happens if we have to cancel your trip?
In the unlikely event that we must cancel a trip due to some reasons beyond our control, you will receive a full refund. We have never cancelled our trips for years!
Q: Do you cancel or charge more in case other people cancel a trip?
Absolutely no! Once we receive your deposit, both price and departure are guaranteed