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Skukuza airport

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Goggo EJ
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Re: Skukuza airport

Unread post by Goggo EJ » Wed Jun 25, 2014 6:05 pm

Right! Went to the airport.....it is still something of a building site around the terminal building and the little shop was stocking up, Avis office is still waiting for desks to be delivered before being operational at the airport. All looks good inside though with check-in desk on the left as you walk in, and a concierge desk on the right down a short passage.

I was able to talk to one of the airport managers and get the information I wanted from her, and then drove to Skukuza and got more information from the Avis manager.

1. If you book a vehicle from Avis it will be waiting for you at the airport - worse case scenario is a shuttle to the camp, but that is free for all who have booked a vehicle. Booking in advance means your choice of car (or a better one) will be available.

2. Budget do also provide vehicles, but their depot is outside Kruger gate so a little more difficult, but again they will usually bring the car into Kruger to Skukuza or to the airport for you.

3. A shuttle will be operational for those who need to get from airport to camp or vice versa and that is R150/person. Yes it is steep, but they want to discourage back-packers for example who just pitch up on a plane and then expect to be ferried around or try to hitch with other guests (it was a problem when the airport was open before).

4. To indicate that you want the vehicle at the airport rather than the camp you must put your flight number on the booking form, if there is no flight number they will presume you want the car at camp. (But even then I suspect you will get a free ride into camp - I did not ask about that as I have only just thought about it :redface: ).

I think that is all I needed to find out???? The manager did advise that anyone wanting to leave a car for a return (eg staff) rather leave the car at Skukuza and get a lift out because of the building still going on. In time they may have parking facilities for folk to leave cars.
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Re: Skukuza airport

Unread post by nighthawk2 » Wed Jun 25, 2014 6:50 pm

I'm trying to figure out the motivation for flying into Skukuza - especially for overseas visitors.
An add on flight from Joburg to Skukuza is about $100.00 per person. Depending upon arrival time in Joburg, there may be a layover for a couple of hours. The drive from Joburg to Malelane is at best 4-1/2 hours and no way is fuel & car rental going to amount to $200.00 per couple.
If one flys into Skukuza, you still have to leave the park to do grocery shopping unless you intend to eat in restaurants the whole stay.
After a lengthy flight to start with, I personally don't see hanging around to catch another flight to Skukuza to only exit the park the next day to do the grocery shopping. To me, it makes more sense to overnight in Joburg & leave whenever is convenient to drive to Malelane for example.
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Re: Skukuza airport

Unread post by iLoveMeerkats! » Thu Jun 26, 2014 5:46 am

nighthawk2 wrote:I'm trying to figure out the motivation for flying into Skukuza - especially for overseas visitors.
What am I missing?


Welllllllllll.....

First off, I am old and the husband is even older. Traveling long distance is hard on these old bodies. What with the long drive to the airport, 1o+ hour flight to London, layover, 10+ hour flight to JNB, we are totally and completely spent by the time we arrive. Totally jetlagged. Exhausted. Haven't slept for a zillion hours. And did I mention my aching back? There is NO WAY we could safely drive the 5 hours to Kruger after all that...it would be suicide. We could spend the night in a hotel and try and recoup, but that would cost more than the flight and, more importantly, that would be one less day in the bush.

We have spent loads of time in Joberg and driven to Kruger many many times, so I do not feel like we are missing seeing something along the way that we have never seen. All I want to do is get to Kruger as fast (and painlessly) as I can. Now I can fly into Kruger, drive 5 km and spend the rest of the day getting rejuvenated looking at the river, unpacking, chillin'. Heaven!

We always stay for at least a month, so we have plenty of time to get to the market after a few days.

What's not to understand??? :dance:

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Re: Skukuza airport

Unread post by suebfly » Thu Jun 26, 2014 8:27 am

Excellent perspective iLoveMeerkats!. For me as a South African flying from Cape Town I want to spend as little time on the roads outside of Kruger as possible - for many, many reasons.

So I am THRILLED about the Skukuza airport. Phalaborwa is wonderful but expensive. We have just spent 10 days in Kruger and did not find it necessary to leave the park for shopping at all. The shops at camps had everything we needed and with the new restaurants we were totally spoilt for choice. For me future trips are going to start at Skukuza airport every time :thumbs_up: :thumbs_up:

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Re: Skukuza airport

Unread post by Crested Val » Thu Jun 26, 2014 9:12 am

It's really a case of "Each to their own".

Those who want to drive to Kruger from either other SA areas or from Joburg airport will do so, and those who don't want a long drive can now fly direct to Skukuza...................the good thing is, we have a choice!!!

We have always driven in the past, but with my SO and I having various medical issues, we will most probably fly London-Joburg-Skukuza in future.

When we arrive we will buy necessities at the park shop, and eat the first night at the restaurant, and then go the following day to do a big shop outside the park.

I understand it is a bit of a faff to go back out, but Komatipoort, Malelane or Hazyview are only just the other side of the various gates, and you are still driving mostly in the park to get to them.

For us, weighed against that long drive from Joburg, that will be the way to go for us in future!!!

However, as I said.............each to their own!!! :dance:

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Re: Skukuza airport

Unread post by arks » Thu Jun 26, 2014 1:48 pm

For me, I love the funky Phalaborwa airport and for some years have only visited the northern and central parts of the park. BUT flying from Phalaborwa to Cape Town requires a change at OR Tambo and since I have two cases (because I'm generally staying in SA for 2-3 months and need 'city' clothes as well as KNP clothes :wink: ), one case is invariably lost/delayed en route :roll: with often much time wasted in locating the missing case and getting it back. Thus, the option of the direct flight SKU-CPT is most appealing!
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Re: Skukuza airport

Unread post by Weltenman » Thu Jun 26, 2014 3:15 pm

Crested Val used a key word, choice. That is something that SANParks want to offer visitors, a choice. If you don't want to cook, eat in a restaurant (now that proper ones are in operation in most camps), Don't want to drive? The fly in to Skukuza. Don't want to spend a fortune, camping is the way to go.

Not everyone wants to holiday in the same way and we shouldn't be forced to or force others to do it our way.
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arks
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Re: Skukuza airport

Unread post by arks » Thu Jun 26, 2014 4:58 pm

Crested Val wrote:Also Arks if you really only want to stay north, you can fly directly to Cape Town from Hoedspruit airport SA Airlink (50 seater.)

They also have car hire facilities. (Maybe you already know that though!!!!) :thumbs_up:

I actually hadn't been aware of that, Val, thanks, tho my preferred final camp in the north is Shimuwini, which isn't very convenient for Hoedspruit. And I'm just plain curious to see the Skukuza airport again, since I flew from there for my Emerging Tusker prize in 2007 :-) .
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Re: Skukuza airport

Unread post by WELSH_ASH » Tue Jul 01, 2014 11:50 am

Many thanks to ecojunkie and others for looking into these queries :thumbs_up:

I have called Avis reservations in the UK and added my flight number to the booking. Fingers crossed my Toyota Fortuner will be waiting at the airport for me :pray:

Also, to note. Before the airport Avis office opened, Avis were only able to confirm a limited amount of hire cars when booking. But now it seems an almost full range of hire cars seem to be available, e.g. Hyundai IX35, Fortuner which is a big benefit for those preferring to drive a higher sided vehicle.

4 months and counting and I will be there !!

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Re: Skukuza airport

Unread post by Leanawel » Tue Jul 01, 2014 1:01 pm

Hi WELSH-ASH

I think your Fortuner (and yes, we drive a Fortuner and it is a nice high vehicle for the bush and gravel roads) will be at the airport. I have also made a booking for next week, putting the flight number at the reference space, but when my confirmation came via email, I could not see the flight number. So I called this morning, but the agent told me that he can see the flight number on his side and therefore knows that the car must be at the airport.

Compliments to the staff of AVIS, they are extremely friendly and helpful :gflower:

Enjoy counting down, mine almost here, still 6 days to go :dance: :dance:

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Re: Skukuza Airport To Skukuza Rest Camp

Unread post by ctm7943 » Mon Jul 14, 2014 6:55 pm

Thank you RobertT.
I believe I read about some sort of gate/park entry pass that is provided as you enter the park and show your accommodation reservations documentation.
Is this correct or is this pass only needed if exiting the park & require re-entry?

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Goggo EJ
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Re: Skukuza Airport To Skukuza Rest Camp

Unread post by Goggo EJ » Mon Jul 14, 2014 8:22 pm

I picked up guests at the airport on Thursday for the bush camp. The staff at the airport check in-coming passengers and issue any permits etc. I am not sure of the procedure as our guests did not need anything in fact, but somebody did come to check us.
Smiling is contagious. Start an epidemic today!

Have you read the entrance permit? Do you KNOW the Conditions of Entry?

Completed over 7 years in Kruger in my caravan.

If I was normal I wouldn't be me!

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Skukuza car hire - help please

Unread post by Bush Baptist » Fri Jul 18, 2014 10:42 am

Hi all, I am intending to fly into Skukuza and want to hire a car there.

Google is not very helpful and neither is the SANParks website.

1. What is the procedure? Do you hire cars at Skuk airport or are you driven to the camp to hire them there?
2. What operators operate from there?
3. Do they have an option of more than 100 km per day which is pretty useless in Kruger.

Or is far more cost effective to fly to KMIA and hire there.

I would rather fly into Skuk though, but if it is made 'difficult'......

Thanks for any info.
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Re: Skukuza car hire - help please

Unread post by Stark » Fri Jul 18, 2014 4:13 pm

It looks pretty easy, BB. Pickup and dropoff available at the airport, Avis only I believe at this point (SANParks should revisit this and offer a competitive playing field with more than one vendor), check in at the airport.

Looking forward to hearing your experience with the flight and airport process if/when you go, BB!
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Re: Skukuza airport

Unread post by mfs » Fri Jul 18, 2014 7:06 pm

Hello all. This seems like a good place to post Skukuza airport / car hire questions.

I'll be taking a group of university students to Kruger for 3 nights in Jan 2015. It's a trip I've done several times on my own.

We'll be arriving on a Saturday and leaving on Tuesday pretty early -- in time to catch an international flight at JNB.

I thought it would be very nice to rent cars (there are 16 of us) for the group to self drive, besides doing the park's morning and evening drives.

However, I'm wondering how late the car rental offices are open (I assume that there's still one at the camp, and one at the airport?)

To keep the budget under control and to keep things simple, we may be taking ground transport from a hotel in the Joburg area to Kruger. I'm concerned we may arrive too late to pick up a rented car. While our ground transport may be available to use, such a large group transport hardly makes for the best self drive.

Thus, my question: Does anybody know how late the car hire offices are open to pick up a car? I believe the posted hours for the camp office is noon, but there is a 2:10 flight into SZK.


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