Contact Us

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Chose what works best for you, from either our powerful Questions & Answers section or by phone or email.
(We endeavour to answer emails in real time during normal office hours)

 

Call Us

For general enquiries, calling from outside the UK and sales information:

General Inquiry

Sales Enquiries

01489 866939 (UK)

+44 1489 866939 (OVERSEAS)

Opening Hours

OPENING HOURS

Mon - Fri 9am - 7pm

Sat: 9am - 5pm

Sun: 10am - 4pm

Mon (29.05.17) Bank Holiday: Closed


All calls are answered live 
within 9 seconds (2017 avg)

 
 
General Inquiry

Administration (After sales)

01489 866901 (UK)

+44 1489 866901 (OVERSEAS)

Opening Hours

MONDAY - THURSDAY

9am - 5.30pm

FRIDAY

9am - 5pm

SATURDAY

Closed

SUNDAY

Closed
The Administration Department is closed on Bank Holidays

 

Meet Our Sales Team...

Our expert sales team is on hand to help you with any type of enquiry.

Kerry

Kerry - Team Leader

Likes - The Senegambia Hotel

Having visited the Gambia 14 times in her 10 years with the company (mostly on her own holidays) Kerry lists the great weather, variety of food, & the Gambia's general quirkiness as her main reasons for returning year after year.

 
 
Shelley

Anna

Likes - the Ocean Bay Hotel

Being a bit of a sun-worshipper Anna is drawn to the permanent 30 degree temperatures & has visited the Gambia 7 times including her own holidays. She thinks the African cultures makes a refreshing change from holidaying in the med.

 
 
Mandy

Mandy

Likes - the guaranteed weather!

Mandy has been visiting the Gambia for 14 years & feels the consistently high service our reps provide is a huge reason that so many of our guests are regulars.

 
 
Katie

Ingrid

Likes - Mandina Lodges

Travelling up the river in a dug out canoe at Mandina Lodges, with one of the local guides pointing out the wildlife was really spectacular and really feels like you're getting back to nature!

 
 
Tony

Tony - Customer Manager

Likes - Tony found that a great way of seeing the real Gambia was joining the 4 wheel drive excursion

Local school visits, visiting a Gambian family compound, learning to tap fruit from the tops of palm trees & bumping around off-road is an exhausting but thoroughly enjoyable day!

 

Questions & Answers

We've put together a list of answers to questions we are often asked by our customers before travelling:

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Q: I need extra baggage allowance, can you arrange that?

Our standard baggage allowance for package holidays is 20kg per person year round on our own charter flights.

It is not possible to purchase additional luggage and we cannot guarantee that unallocated excess baggage will be accepted.

During our winter season, we have a limited amount of excess baggage which we can allocate for registered charities only, please contact our Admin Team on 01489 866901 for more information and availability. This is allocated on a first come, first served basis.

Generally speaking excess baggage will be charged at £15 per kilo in each direction at the airport, however this is subject to change depending on the airline and excess baggage is not guaranteed to be checked in.

If upgrading to Star Class on Titan Airways flights from Gatwick, you will benefit from an allowance of 30kg and if upgrading to Star Plus, an allowance of 40kg.

Infants under the age of 2 years old at the time of travel will receive a complimentary 10kg hold baggage allowance. In addition a collapsible pushchair and car seat will be carried free of charge. Travel cots will be weighed as part of the infant allowance. Infants must be under 2 years of age on both sectors of the journey.

 
Q: What is my hand luggage entitlement?

On our winter flights the hand luggage allowance is 6kg with Titan Airways and Thomas Cook. For Titan Star Class passengers this increases to 10kg. During the summer the allowance is also 6kg with Small Planet Airlines.

Dimensions differ from airline to airline but should be no larger than 55cm x 40cm x 20cm.

Please ensure that your hand luggage does not contain any sharp objects. Some airlines only allow 1 piece of hand baggage per passenger, including ladies handbags and laptops.

 
Q: I represent a charity, can I have excess baggage?

If you are travelling as part of a charity we will do our very best to accommodate your extra luggage requirements.

We have a limited allowance per flight for charity excess on our Gatwick flights, this is subject to availability and only given to registered charities. To receive a maximum of 5kg per person charity luggage, you will be required to supply a registered charity number.

  • Due to the high number of charity requests we receive this is on a first come first serve basis.
  • Airline restrictions mean our charity allowance is limited per flight, once it is allocated we cannot exceed this allowance.

Please contact Administration on 01489 866901 or at admin@gambia.co.uk for availability.

An alternative option would be to freight goods, which is also less expensive. This can be done through ‘Redcoat Travel’ on 01293 522440.

 
Q: What is the weather like?

Located midway between the Tropic of Cancer and the Equator, The Gambia enjoys virtually uninterrupted sunshine and high daytime temperatures with almost no rainfall from November to June. On the coast, The Gambia experiences only small fluctuations in temperature from winter to summer; however from July to October the humidity level is high as the tropical sun is interrupted by short but spectacular showers. Although the months of heaviest rainfall are normally August and September, we have found that it has not detracted from our clients' enjoyment of their holiday. Nevertheless, a lightweight rain mac or umbrella may prove useful in these months. Between January and April, evenings and early mornings can be cooler than people expect. For those planning to travel inland away from the coast and the benefit of the sea breezes, it is important to note that temperatures during the summer can reach 42°C.

To view a climate chart - Click here

 
Q: What is the currency in The Gambia and how can I pay?

The Gambia's currency is the dalasi, with £1 sterling currently buying around 60 dalasis (as at December 2016) in local exchange bureaus. Rates in hotels vary between 55-65 dalasis. As with all currencies, the dalasi rate to the pound can fluctuate. Dalasis are available in the UK but you will get a better exchange rate in The Gambia. Currency can easily be obtained at the airport, most hotels, banks or bureau de change and there are a few ATMs where cash can be obtained from a VISA card. The largest note that is available is a D200 and the smallest is D5 - it is always worth trying to keep your smaller denominations as many stall traders will not have enough small notes for change if you pay with a larger note.

Although some restaurants and hotels in The Gambia accept credit cards, it is not wise to rely on them. Debit cards are still more restricted; Visa Electron and Maestro cards are not accepted. You should always check that your card will be accepted and whether there is any surcharge. At some hotels your bill will be converted into US dollars prior to it appearing as a sterling amount on your statement. This may result in some exchange rate surcharges.

Sterling cash can be changed without a problem but travellers cheques are no longer accepted. The new currency cards are not yet known about in detail and if used may attract a charge.

 
Q: What language do they speak in The Gambia?

English is the official language and language of instruction in most schools (The Gambia is a former British Colony). However, various tribal languages are used by the Gambians to converse between themselves.

 
Q: How easy is it to get around in The Gambia?

Most main roads in the greater Banjul area are now tarmac but away from the tourist areas and pff the main roads they can be little more than dirt tracks. Traffic and direction signs are still limited, however the road quality has improved over the past several years.

There is no rail service but you will find green tourist taxis readily available outside your hotel. Taxis can be hired for a specific journey or for a half or full day, in both cases it is best to agree the price in advance; there should be a price board together with a taxi supervisor to help. The taxi waiting time is charged at approximately £2.00 per hour, but often the first couple of waiting hours are free. It is often difficult to find a tourist taxi outside of the tourist areas so it is advisable to pre-book your return journey.

Yellow taxis are generally used by the local community and can be shared or private. Prices are negotiable and they are generally cheaper than the tourist taxis however they are not allowed to go into the resort areas so you may have to walk to your hotel from the drop off point.

Bush taxis are available which are often very crowded but offer a very economical way of travelling and a way of absorbing part of the local flavour.

Car and motorbike hire is available for the more independent, although can be rather expensive and definitely not recommended.  Please remember that they drive on the right-hand side of the road in The Gambia and sometimes with little driving etiquette, so always be extra careful on the highways!

 
Q: Do you need inoculations to visit The Gambia?

Although inoculations are not compulsory for entry, we strongly suggest you consult your doctor before booking who will recommend certain medication, including anti-malarial tablets as a precaution. Children and pregnant women may require special vaccination procedures.

Some GP’s may suggest that you will need to show a yellow fever vaccination certificate at immigration and will be refused entry if you don’t show it. If you are travelling to Gambia from the EU you are not required to show a certificate as proof.  You will not be refused entry to The Gambia if you haven’t had the inoculation on this basis alone. However, as stated we do strongly suggest you consult your doctor, obtaining professional advice before booking. Under International Health Regulations, a certificate of yellow fever vaccination is required from travellers over 9 months of age travelling from The Gambia into Senegal or vice versa.travelling from The Gambia into Senegal or vice versa.

We have joined forces with the Lloyds Pharmacy Online Doctor so you can now purchase your malaria tablets on line and have them delivered direct to your door. Any commission we receive from sales will be donated to our School Development Fund. Please click the following link to access the service: Lloyds Pharmacy - Online Doctor

For up-to-date advice visit the World Health Organisation at www.who.int/ith and the Department of Health leaflet (Ref T7.1) “Health Advice to Travellers” is available free from your GP, travel agent or online.

 
Q: What medicines should I take with me?

Any prescribed medication should be carried in your hand luggage along with a copy of the prescription. We would advise that you take medicines to treat dehydration, small ailments, stomach upsets, insect bites and cuts, along with mosquito repellent and sun tan creams, as such items can be expensive and not always available in The Gambia. A practice which should be avoided in any hot climate is drinking very cold drinks straight after coming out of the hot sun as this can cause stomach upsets. Bottled water can be bought in most hotels and supermarkets at a reasonable price.

 
Q: The Gambia is free of Ebola and always has been. What are the key facts?
  • The key thing to remember is that there has never been Ebola in The Gambia and it has remained this way since the outbreak in West Africa first came to prominence in March 2014.
  • The Foreign Office advice concerning travel to The Gambia has remained consistent in this time and there are no restrictions at all on travel between the UK and The Gambia.
  • The Gambia does not share land borders with any of the current Ebola-infected countries, Guinea, Sierra Leone or Liberia.
  • The Gambian government have, since the 21st August, suspended all flights into The Gambia from these countries - including restrictions on anyone that has visited any of the affected countries within 21 days of travel.

Read a message from our Managing Director - From The Gambia

We are, of course, acutely aware of ongoing customer concerns so if you do have any questions please call our dedicated Customer Care team on 01489 866981.

 
Q: What about travel insurance?

Insurance is a must. We feel it is so important that we insist you either take our special travel insurance or arrange a policy yourself at the time of booking which must provide cover equal to our own standard policy.

If you have taken our insurance and have booked online or received an email confirmation from us, the insurance policy will be attached as a PDF and also appear as a PDF link within your emailed invoice. If you receive an invoice by post, the insurance policy will be enclosed in the form of a booklet.

In both cases your booking reference acts as the policy number and your invoice is the insurance certificate.

 
Q: Is the Gambia safe? I've heard stories of hassling.

There is a high level of religious tolerance in The Gambia and crime against tourists is low so venturing outside the hotels is safe.

You will experience 'bumsters' who have chosen to make their living outside the hotels and on the beach selling excursions, handicrafts or offering to show tourists around the local area. Some can be persistent to the point of being a nuisance although The Gambia Tourist Board has successfully reduced the number of bumsters in recent years.

You will experience less hassle in Senegal although in both countries we would advise you to exercise caution and not show off valuables publicly as in any foreign country.

Nightclubs outside of resort areas are not recommended. Please speak to your representative first.

 
Q: Is there any time difference between here and The Gambia?

The Gambia is on GMT, so there is no time difference during the winter.

During the summer, whilst the UK is on British Summer Time, The Gambia is 1 hour behind us.

With only 6 hours flying time from the UK and no jet lag you can be relaxing by the pool by late afternoon, sipping a cocktail and watching the sun set.

 
Q: What type of clothing should I wear?

Generally take clothes that are comfortable and loose fitting, preferably cotton or linen; we also recommend a hat as protection against the strong midday sun. Although dress is not formal, in the evenings most hotels and restaurants require gentlemen to wear shirts and long trousers or dress shorts. A jumper may come in handy for early morning excursions, although for most other tours we would recommend shorts and T shirts.

 
Q: Is there poverty?

The standard of living in The Gambia is much lower than in the UK as it is a developing country, so poverty and begging are common. Having said this, most Gambians are extremely hospitable and it is not uncommon for locals to invite tourists to their homes. If you wish to visit a compound, a bag of rice would be an ideal gift, the cost being approximately £20.

 
Q: What happens if there is a delay?

Occasionally, despite the best efforts of all concerned, flights are delayed for reasons beyond our personal control. If a long delay occurs, we will always do our best to provide a snack or meal when appropriate and in the case of an overnight delay, suitable accommodation. If we are made aware of a potential delay we will do our very best to advise you, again this is another reason why you must reconfirm your flight. 

Please note that the choice of accommodation for flight delays is made by the airline and is not part of your original package holiday.

 
Q: Are transfers included?

Transfers are included in our package holidays unless you have booked a "budget" package where transfers can be added for £15pp. 

Private transfers can also be arranged from £40 one way. Please note we do not provide transfer vouchers in your ticket pack for standard transfers, however it will be displayed on your confirmation invoice. 

The average transfer takes around 30 minutes depending on the drop off and collection point. The longest transfer is still under an hour.

 
Q. What is Advance Passenger information (API)?

As a result of UK Government legislation, we are required to collect Advance Passenger (passport) Information from all customers (including infants) travelling to and from the UK by air. If we do not receive this information, tickets cannot be processed.

What information is needed per passenger?

  • Full name, as per your passport including any middle names.
  • Your date of birth.
  • The travel document 'type' eg: passport.
  • Your nationality.
  • Passport Country of Issue.
  • Passport number, issue date and expiry date.

When is the information required by?

  • Either at the time of booking or at least 21 days before travel in order for your tickets to be processed in time. Failure to do so will prevent tickets from being issued. Any API details received within 7 days of departure will result in a Ticket on Departure being arranged, for which you may be charged.

How can I provide this information?

  • Please visit our API page on our website where you can input the information. Alternatively you can call Administration on 0845 330 2044. We advise that you do not email this information due to data protection reasons.

What if I book late?

  • Our website will not confirm a booking within 7 days of travel, unless you input your API details, so please have them to hand.
  • Ticket on Departure information will not be provided until we have your API details.
 
Q: Are my Premium Class/Extra Legroom seat numbers guaranteed?

Although seats are pre-bookable and we endeavour to provide requested seat numbers depending on availability, they may be subject to change by the airline at short notice, which is unfortunately out of our control. Seat numbers may also be adjusted if there is an unexpected change in aircraft or for medical reasons, which again may occur at short notice. Due to this, the airline is not able to confirm seat numbers prior to your departure date.

 
Q: Can I upgrade my return flight in The Gambia?

Yes, although this will be subject to availability. Please check with your hotel representative or with our Resort Office. 

If you wish to book the airconditioned Banjul Airport lounge you can check availability with our UK Sales Team at the time of booking or with our Resort Office whilst in The Gambia. The cost is from £15 per person and depends on whether Premium Class is full on the day of travel.

 
Q: What form of payment do you accept in the UK?

Debit cards (no handling charge)

  • Switch/Maestro
  • Visa Electron (through our call centre)
  • Delta

Credit cards (will incur a 1.6% handling charge)

  • Visa
  • MasterCard
  • American Express

Unfortunately we are not able to accept Solo cards.

Cheques should be made payable to The Gambia Experience and your holiday reference added to the reverse of the cheque along with your name and address.

Bank transfers

  • Account number: 06019129
  • Sort code: 60-18-46

Please quote your booking reference number on all bank transfer transactions. 

 
Q. I wish to upgrade my flight, what can you offer me?

Our winter LGW chartered flights from Friday 20th December feature a limited number of upgraded Premium Class flight seats in a separate forward cabin featuring increased leg room, wider seats, upgraded meal and drinks service. On our winter Tuesday flights from LGW we will be flying to Banjul with Monarch, which, in addition to the 199 economy seats, will also have 30 seats with extra legroom at the front of the airplane.These extra legroom seats have a 33" pitch and are available to book from £50 per person each way (from £100 return).   We can also offer a limited number of emergency exit seats from Gatwick (Fridays in winter, Tuesday in summer) from £50pp one way. Please speak to our Sales Team at the time of booking for availability.

 
Q. How do I go about reconfirming my return flight?

Please ensure that you reconfirm your return flight to the UK no later than 3 days prior to your return date by telephoning our Resort Office in The Gambia on 4460317 or 4461104. The Office is situated at The Senegambia Hotel in Kololi. It is important that you do this, in case of a change to your flight, which may happen at short notice.  For the same reasons, Banjul originating clients must reconfirm their flight at least 2 days prior to travel by contacting the UK Administration Team on 0845 3302044. You must reconfirm your flight to guarantee your seat.

 
Q: How do I go about changing my booking?

Any amendment will be subject to availability, amendment charges (excludes flexible ticket holders), plus any difference in costs. Further details should be obtained from our Administration department on 0845 330 2044 or at admin@gambia.co.uk.  Amendments within 7 days of travel are not always possible.

If you are already out in The Gambia and wish to amend your booking, please contact our Resort Office on 4461104 or 4460317 for price and availability. To extend a flight only ticket in Resort it would be a minimum of £160 and you are only able to extend for a maximum of two weeks subject to availability. For package holidays the cost would be £160 for the flight extension plus any difference in accommodation costs. You cannot change from a package holiday to a flight only booking.

 
Q: Do I need a visa to visit The Gambia?

For British passport holders, visas are not required for entry into The Gambia. You must be travelling on a full 10 year British passport, valid at least until the date of arrival back in the UK.

One way travel to The Gambia is not permitted for British passport holders without the correct documentation. Please check with the Gambia High Commission for more details. Other passport holders should contact the Gambia High Commission for visa requirements. The telephone number for the Gambia High Commission in London is 0207 937 6316.

The Senegalese Government intends to impose a tourist visa on British passport holders travelling to Senegal for visits of under 90 days. Prior to 1st May 2014, all tourists travelling with a tour operator are exempt from paying for a visa and we will apply for a visa exemption on your behalf. As of 1st May 2014, passengers travelling to Senegal will need to apply online for a tourist visa prior to travel. The cost is €50 per person and details will be sent with your ticket pack. For further information please consult Visa Senegal.

 
Q: Who do I tell about special requests?

We shall be pleased to pass on your request to the airline or hotel, however we cannot guarantee that they will be met. If you have any special requests for your accommodation or flights, please ensure they are requested at the time of booking as procedures for flight requests vary from airline to airline and they require as much notice as possible. Airlines tend to require at least 5 days notice for any dietary requirements.

 
Q: When will I receive my tickets?

These can be expected 2 weeks prior to your date of travel and will include our Gambia Guide (packages) or Travel Advice leaflet (Flight Only) which we hope you will find useful. For security reasons, tickets can only be posted to the billing address if payment was made by card.

If you have started your journey in Banjul and amend your ticket in the UK, the ticket will be available to collect at the airport on the day of travel.  Tickets for UK passengers who have booked close to the departure date will also be issued at the airport on the day of travel, so you will need to allow sufficient time for collection. Unless you are advised otherwise, please collect your tickets from the Ace Handling representative who will be near the check in desk indicated beside your flight number on the departure screens. For passengers travelling from Gatwick, the Ace Handling Desk is located in Zone G at the South Terminal.

 
Q. Are there any internet cafes in The Gambia?

There are a few internet cafes in Resort areas and several hotels have WiFi and internet access, but access to the internet may be erratic and line speed very slow.

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Business Contact Information

For specific business enquiries:

Department Information
n
 
General Inquiry

Press: Louise Thomas
+44 (0)1489 866963
press-office@gambiaflights.co.uk

 
General Inquiry

Customer Relations:  Sarah Taylor
+44 (0)1489 866951
customerrelations@gambiaflights.co.uk

 
Vouchers Inquiry

Travel Agents: Jason Dicks
+44 (0)1489 866955
trade@serenity.co.uk

 
 
 
 
 
General Enquiries
Contact Address
 
General Inquiry

Reservations:
01489 866939
/ +44 1489 866939
Email reservations »

Administration
01489 866901
/ +44 1489 866901
Email administration »

Fax: +44 (0)1489 866917 / +44 1489 866917

General Inquiry

The Gambia Experience
Serenity Holidays Ltd
Atlantic House,
3600 Parkway,
Solent Business Park,
Fareham,
Hampshire,
UK,
PO15 7AN

 
 
 
How To Find Us

By Road
Solent Business Park, Whiteley - M27:J9
Portsmouth - 12 miles
Southampton - 10 miles
Fareham - 5 miles

How To Find Us

By Air
Southampton Airport 7 miles away
with daily flights across Europe.

How To Find Us

By Rail:
Waterloo to Swanwick - 143 mins
Waterloo to Soton Central - 69 mins
Soton Central to Swanwick - 20 mins

How To Find Us

By Sea:
Passenger service from Portsmouth
to Caen, Cherbourg, St Malo and
Le Havre.

 
 
 
 
 
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