What tour company should I use when climbing Kilimanjaro?

What tour company should I use when climbing Kilimanjaro?

Tl;dr: We highly recommend Zara Tours! Our team has climbed with Zara Tours before, and several of our customers have as well.

Choosing a tour company to climb Kilimanjaro with is definitely no easy decision (but we'll make it simple for you 😉). Our preferred climbing partner is Zara Tours, as we've climbed with them multiple times, and so have our clients—though there are a multitude of other companies you can climb with.

There are several factors to consider when deciding which trekking company to climb Kilimanjaro with; however, the top ones are listed below:

Do they actually do the climb?
You may come across several companies that say that they offer the climb, but do they actually offer it? Look into and ask who is going to be doing the actual climbing portion as a tour operator may sub-contract out to another tour operator to fulfill the climb (in this case, you may get no extra benefit unless specified otherwise).

Reputation and Reviews
If a company is just starting out, it may be good to give them a shot, but it's better to go with a reputable company that has experience in the space and experience dealing with problems.

Safety Records and Protocols
At the end of the day, you are summiting the highest mountain in Africa and the tallest free-standing mountain in the world—so you want to ensure that you are safe at all times. In the case of an emergency, you want a team that knows what to do.

Guide Experience and Certification
You spend several days with your guides on the mountain. Every day, your guides are going to check on you to ensure that you're fit to reach the summit. If your guide is inexperienced, they may push you beyond your limit, which could be detrimental to your health—so you want to avoid inexperienced guides or guides who are not certified.

Sustainability and Ethical Practices
When climbing Kilimanjaro, you'll see the number of porters, cooks, and others who make your trip a success. Most times, these individuals may not have the proper equipment or may not get paid as much as you'd expect. So it's important to pick a company that contributes to sustainability and ethical practices for these other individuals. In addition, you want a tour company that's committed to preserving the mountain in its natural state.

Climbing Preparation and Support
Go with a company that will prepare you for what you're about to experience (luckily enough, we'll do this for you if you book through us 😌). Aside from the pre-departure information, it's important to go with a company that will also give you briefings before, during, and after your climb.

Aside from the points mentioned above, cost is another thing to account for. We've covered the cost of climbing Kilimanjaro in a separate article here. If you do happen to find a tour or trekking company that can offer you a very cheap climb, I would look into the details mentioned above to ensure that your safety is still the top priority and that they treat their staff well.

Ready to start looking into your Kilimanjaro climb? Check out one of our programs below (offered by Zara Tours, our preferred tour operator for Kilimanjaro)

5 Day Marangu Route

6 Day Marangu Route

6 Day Machame Route

7 Day Machame Route (Recommended Route)

6 Day Rongai Route

8 Day Lemosho Route

That's all! If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our team at [email protected]