General Information for Your Kosher Vacation

Visas

  • Citizens of the U.S., most commonwealth countries, Israel, and South Africa, entering Argentina and most Latin American countries on regular passports (not temporary passports), do not require visas.

  • However, American citizens require visas for Brazil to be applied for in advance, and need to pay reciprocity fees for Argentina online before entering,

  • Visa regulations change from time to time and differ from country to country , so all clients need to check their own requirements with the consulates of the countries they will be visiting at least 3 months prior to their trip.

  • Visitors must ensure that they have at least 4 blank VISA pages (not endorsement pages) in their passport and that there passport is valid for at least 6 months after the end of their trip.

  • though we try our best to provide up to date information, LAKS cannot take responsibility for accuracy of visa information, which MUST be verified by the consulates of the countries concerned!

Flights

  • International flights to and from the hub city of the tour need to be booked directly by clients or their travel agents, though we will do our best to advise them in this regard.

  • Our current hubs in South America are Buenos Aires for Argentina tours, and Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro, for Brazil tours.

  • local flights need to be booked at the same time as international flights according to our instructions, unless otherwise stated.

Food

  • We have 12 years experience providing freshly prepared , gourmet cuisine, in the most out-of-the-way places, under the strictest Kosher supervision.

  • On luxury tours and most semi-luxury and budget tours, food is prepared fresh on site in the presence of a mashgiach

  • On our VIP tours, our very own pastry chef bakes fresh breads and pastries daily, and our tastebuds are tempted daily by our fantastic sushi chef .

  • When out for the day, packed lunches are provided or a sandwich station is set-up at breakfast for clients to prepare their own.

  • Where cheaper tour options are selected, quality pre-prepared kosher meals can be sent with clients

Safety and Security

  • Argentina is generally a very safe destination for tourists.

  • Like in all large cities, certain parts of Buenos Aires and other large cities can be subject to frequent crime, and should be not be walked alone at night.

  • pickpocketing is common, and valuable should be looked after

  • Although Brazil is known for a high crime rate, the better parts of Rio and Sao Paulo are quite safe if you know what you doing, and the beach resorts and tourist locations are generally not a problem at all - just take care with your valuables and don't carry too much cash on your person

  • Both Brazil and Argentina are very Jewish-friendly countries that make Jewish residents and visitors feel very welcome.

  • Like anywhere in the world today, the global terror threat is always there, and we keep all the finer details of our itineraries offline as a precaution, in ALL venues that we operate in around the world- exact venues and final dates of tours are only made known to confirmed participants.

Weather

  • Latin America spans 1 and a half continents, and a diverse range of climate zones.

  • Most of South America is in the Southern hemisphere, and experiences reverse seasons to the Northern hemisphere.

  • Most of Brazil is in the Southern Hemisphere and experiences the cooler season from April-Sep, though due to the tropical latitude of most of the country, winter is generally very pleasant and warm- summer can be scorching but often pours with rain!

  • Argentina spans a huge area from the subtropics to the subantarctic, and the climate varies tremendously.

  • In the North, Iguazu experiences a mild to warm winter and scorching summer, whereas in the far South, Los Glaciares National Park and Ushuaia experience cold summers and freezing winters.

  • Buenos Aires has a semi-mediteranean style climate with mild-cold winters and hot-humid summers.

  • Higher elevations even along the equator can get very cold at any time of the year

  • In short, check your itinerary carefully and pack accordingly, as you will probably need a variety of summer and winter clothing for your trip!

Participants

  • Our participants range in age from senior citizens to young infants, and in observance level, from chareidi, to modern Orthodox and traditional.

  • Some of the luxury tours might be restricted to adults, while our family tours cater wonderfully for children of all ages.

  • Special interest tours for specific ages and/or group types, or private family tours, can be arranged on request.

  • Unless otherwise stated, tours are open to participants of all ages and levels of observance.

  • Very young children are generally not allowed on open jeep game-drives.

Cellphones and Internet

  • International cellphones on full roaming contracts usually work well in Brazil, Argentina, and most and other Latin American countries, where there is network coverage, but are very expensive.

-As they work in most places, they are usually the most reliable means of keeping in phone and email contact.

  • local sim-cards can be arranged in advance with LAKS for a nominal fee, but we cannot take responsibility for the quality and range of service, which generally is rather poor.

  • most hotels that we use, except in extremely remote regions, have wireless internetm though some charge considerable rates for this service, and connectivity can be slow and unreliable.

Health

Argentina and Brazil have relatively modern health-care system and good medical care is available in all main urban centres.

  • The same cannot be said for more remote locations and most other Latin American countries, so travelling with basic medications and first aid is always advisable, as is emergency evacuation and medical/travel insurance.

Yellow fever innoculations are required by certain countries for re-entry into most Latin American countries, and the subtropical, tropical, and equatorial regions often have yellow fever and/or malaria risk, so check your itinerary carefully for guidelines.

  • In general, Argentina is malaria free and only the Iguazu/far Northern region is believed to have a very low risk of yellowfever.

-Women who are pregnant, and families with infants or children under 4-5 should consult their doctor before visiting malaria or yellow-fever areas.

Currency

  • The unit of currency in Brazil is the Real which is currently valued at about 40 US cents, although currency fluctuations can be rather drastic, as can the variance in the actual exchange rate offered.

  • The unit of currency in Argentina is the peso which is currently valued at about 14 US cents, although currency fluctuations can be rather drastic, as can the variance in the actual exchange rate offered- The current inflation rate is VERY high and the currency is highly unstable.

  • Certain ATMs in the region accept most foreign Visa cards , but are UNRELIABLE, and a good combination of local currency, $US cash, and cards is usually the best way to go.

  • Many vendors in the region will ONLY accept cash, but many are all too eager for $US.

  • The GOOD NEWS is that being on an organized trip, you only really need cash for the small things, so its nothing to worry about!

Booking Terms

  • Bookings can only be confirmed once we have received the minimum non-refundable deposit , as per payment terms, plus completed registration/contract forms.

  • All Payments need to be made by direct wire into the official company bank account provided

  • Unless otherwise stated, package prices DO NOT include any flights, and all local and regional flights need to be purchased by the client, according to the guidance of AKS, preferably at the time of purchase of international tickets [ which usually results in significant fare savings.]

-Clients can elect for LAKS to purchase their local flights for them at the rate on the day of purchase plus a 10% service charge. As fares tend to rise significantly as time progresses, we recommend doing this sooner rather than later.

PAYMENT TERMS:

  • A. On registration, with signed contracts: 25% non-refundable deposit
  • B. 4 months prior to tour: a further 25% non-refundable deposit

  • C. 6 weeks prior to tour: the balance of 50% plus 6% tip levy is due to keep bookings secure and avoid cancellation of deposits paid till now.

CANCELLATION POLICY:

  • i. All ammounts paid are NON REFUNDABLE.

  • ii. It is the client's responsibility to take out the necessary trip cancellation insurance to cover for the unlikely event of an emergency cancellation.

  • iii. In certain extreme cases, LAKS may use (and has used in the past) its discretion to refund clients part or all of their fee, where it is able to do so without occuring a loss as a result, but this is purely on a voluntary and non obligatory basis.

LAKS is a division of "Africa Kosher Safaris" cc ( South Africa) AND "Africa Kosher Safaris" DBA (USA) T/A "Kosher Excursions" and "Latin America Kosher Safaris"

General Information

Please click on one of the links to browse through our general information library.

Should there be any information you still require, please give us a call or send us an email.

“It was the experience of a lifetime; the food and accommodations were wonderful and the sights were amazing and unforgettable. Mah rabu maasecha Hashem!!!”

– Albert and Miriam Gonter, Brooklyn/New York

“Yoni and his wonderful team made our African safari a truly magical and unforgetable experience. His careful planning mixed with genuine and personal attention (and chazanut!) made us all feel at home. We highly recommend it!”

– Yirmie and Jordie Elkus, Raanana/Israel

“We had a special family event to celebrate, and were looking for an exciting and different experience. We were very fortunate in that Yoni offered the Chobe and Vic Falls tour. What made our visit complete was the very efficient manner in which all aspects of the planning and tour itself were on the highest professional level. The kosher facilities enhanced this absolutely magnificent trip.”

– Sender and Zelda Lees, Raanana/Israel

“We had a fantastic experience visiting the Chobe region. Could really not have done so without Kosher Safaris. From the logistics to the food everything was well planned and competently executed. Definitely will see us on further excursions.”

– Heidi and Howard Feldman, Johannesburg/South Africa

“We had a wonderful time. It was educational. It was fun. It was heimish. The availability of kosher food and the coordination of the lodges and the overall safari plan certainly made it that much easier for us to enjoy.”

– Yair and Shoshi Friedman, Raanana/Israel

“The guides were first-rate, the accommodation was outstanding, the freshly prepared meals were like eating in a top New York restuarant.”

– David and Jane Novick, Dayton/Ohio

“Thank you for making our holiday such a success and for exceeding our expectations in almost every conceivable way.”

– Alan and Miriam Lewis, London/United Kingdom

“Judi and I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for all your efforts at arranging our recent two week Africa safari. It is safe to say that the experience surpassed our rather substantial expectations!”

– Emanuel and Judi Kanal, Pittsburgh/Pennsylvania

“To our new, dear friends: A Great, Professional performance! our every need was taken care of. An Awesome trip with amazing food and great tours.”

– Beryl Eckstein, Brooklyn/New York

“A once in a lifetime experience. Highly recommended.”

– David Goldberg, Chicago/Illinois

“A wonderful opportunity for a kosher once in a lifetime experience.”

– Dena and Baruch Brody, Houston/Texas

“An unforgettable Vacation!”

– Jesse Berkowitz, Jerusalem/Israel