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Bringing Tourists into the WCNP

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Thu Dec 22, 2011 5:08 pm Unread post
I am looking at setting up a birdwatching business on the west coast and want to use the West Coast National Park as one of the locations. Are there any regulations in place here that may restrict my access in terms of bringing in paying customers?

Also is there anything similar to the wild card that allows you to pay a set fee annual to bring tourists in?

I hope this is the right place to post, I don't want to infringe on any forum rules by asking this.

Thanks
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Re: Bringing Tourists into the WCNP

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Tue Dec 27, 2011 11:08 pm Unread post
Welcome to the forum Stritchy17.

You will have to get the National guiding qualification, as well as the Western Cape guiding qualification.

I have both, It involves knowledge of the area in a lot of disciplines, including other stuff like first aid, basic business acumen etc.

Then you can specialize as a birding guide.


Re: Bringing Tourists into the WCNP

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Wed Dec 28, 2011 12:39 pm Unread post
Thanks for the welcome (although i'm not really new just cant remember what my old account was).

I'm going to get my guiding qualification in a few months time.

I know the park pretty well, I spent quiet a while with the field rangers who told me everything about the park and more.

Back to my original question though is there any regulation set by the park on bringing customers in?


Re: Bringing Tourists into the WCNP

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Wed Dec 28, 2011 1:12 pm Unread post
Stritchy,

I had some time on my hands and I found this pdf guide buried under the Policies, Filming & Photography in Parks page here (scroll down to the Park Specific Commercial Operator Permits section at the bottom of the page).

It seems that WCNP (along with other Cape Parks) has a Commercial Operators Policy and it looks like you need to get a permit. There doesn't appear to be any dates so I assume the policy is still in operation.


Re: Bringing Tourists into the WCNP

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Wed Dec 28, 2011 1:20 pm Unread post
Cheers saraf, thats exactly what I was after :D


Re: Bringing Tourists into the WCNP

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Wed Dec 28, 2011 2:59 pm Unread post
:hmz: Interesting.

You didn't give any hint of how far, if at all, you were down the process in your original question Stritchy, and I was trying to help.

Please let us know what you find out after making the contacts.

It would be interesting to find out if the policy and procedure are universal to all SANParks, and if they are being enforced as such.


Re: Bringing Tourists into the WCNP

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Wed Dec 28, 2011 3:10 pm Unread post
Sorry if I sounded ungrateful, I wasn't being.

I am grateful for any help as i may have missed or overlooked something something.

In a few weeks, after the new year holidays, I will hopefully have found from the head ranger at the park some more information.

I see you said you have both qualifications needed. Is it rewarding guiding people? I cant imagine anything better.


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Wed Dec 28, 2011 3:23 pm Unread post
No problem :thumbs_up:

The Cape is heavily oversubscribed with tour guides, and thus it is not very well paid, but as I am bivocational, I really enjoy the occasional tour that I do, but if you have a niche market like birding, and have regular clientele, I am sure it is quite sustainable.


Re: Bringing Tourists into the WCNP

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Wed Dec 28, 2011 3:35 pm Unread post
I remember once seeing a guide at Cape Point. He was with an American woman who had hired him for the day to show her the sights of Cape Town. Can you imagine, Cape Town in one day? Poor thing was looking shell shocked, and it was only midday. They'd already done Table Mountain and Simon''s Town and had yet to get to Robben Island. Luckily she'd done her shopping.


Re: Bringing Tourists into the WCNP

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Wed Dec 28, 2011 5:36 pm Unread post
As long as I make enough to keep a roof over my head and food in my stomach I'm happy.

From what I gather not too many groups go to the park and I have also gathered some unknown (or less known) but amazing and unique locations.

To me its better than being inside working at a desk.

Cape Town in a day? I have trouble doing the point in a day.


Re: Bringing Tourists into the WCNP

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Wed Dec 28, 2011 6:14 pm Unread post
Stritchy17 wrote
Cape Town in a day? I have trouble doing the point in a day.

Exactly. As I said, shell shocked. :lol:

Good luck.


Re: Bringing Tourists into the WCNP

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Mon Jan 09, 2012 9:22 am Unread post
Dear Stritchy

The answers below are mostly correct - thanks to everyone for offering such good advice.

Please contact the Commercial Operators Permits Officer, Crystal Saville on 021 701 8692 to find out whether you will need to register as a business operator within WCNP. The registration fee I assure you, is absolutely minimal.

Kind regards


Re: Bringing Tourists into the WCNP

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Mon Jan 09, 2012 1:10 pm Unread post
:thumbs_up:


Re: Bringing Tourists into the WCNP

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Mon Jan 09, 2012 8:16 pm Unread post
Thank you for the information. I will give her a call
Its difficult to get information whilst sorting visas and still being in the U.K.


Re: Bringing Tourists into the WCNP

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Tue Jan 10, 2012 8:30 am Unread post
:) You may also email her on crystal.saville@sanparks.org - if this is easier for you.
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