Code of Conduct for HATAB Mobile Members

• To ensure that the mobile sector of HATAB maintains a high level of standard

• To ensure that all HATAB mobile members are bona fine resident Botswana operators, dully licensed by the Department of Tourism and operating within the rules and regulations as set down by the Botswana Government.

Licensing, certification and permits

• Companies operating mobile safaris must be in possession of a valid Tourism Enterprise License issued by the Department of Tourism for the mobile category.

• All operators must be in possession of a company Certificate of Incorporation issued in Botswana by the Registrar of Companies.

• All non-citizens employed as professional guides must be in possession of a valid Professional Guide’s License issued by the Department of Wildlife and National Parks, valid work and residence permits as issued by the Department of Labour and Home Affairs, and may only undertake work for the company whose name is stated on those licenses and permits, which company name should correspond.

• As the professional guide has to be the driver of the vehicle which is being used to carry clients, the driver must carry on his person a valid driver’s license appropriate to the size or type of vehicle being driven. A license issued within the SADC region is recognized in Botswana (as of November 1999). Driving licenses issued in all other countries must be converted to a Botswana driving license within 6 months of a person taking up residence in Botswana.

• Vehicles used to carrying or transporting paying clients must carry a ‘P’ permit and the driver of these vehicles must be the holder of a ‘PSV’ license, both of which are issued by the Department of Transport. • All professional guides must be in possession of a valid first aid certificate.

• All passenger and supply vehicles and trailers being used on HATAB sites must be registered in Botswana and in the name of the operating company or a director of that company.

• If members use private radios for communications, each one is required to have a Private Radio Communication License issued by the Botswana Telecommunications Authority.

• Any member operating a boat must register it with the Department of Water Affairs for use in a particular zone. The boat will then be issued with a boat registration number, which must be displayed in the prescribed manner.


• Members of the HATAB mobile sector must hold a basic minimum insurance of P500,000 per client for both Public and Passenger Liability and produce evidence of such cover to HATAB upon request.

• All companies, by Botswana Law, must have Workmen’s Compensation insurance covering all staff engaged in business for and on behalf of the company.

• All professional guides should acquaint themselves with local emergency evacuation procedures and contact numbers for medical insurance evacuations. HATAB recommends that each company provides insurance to cover their employees and clients for such an event.


• Any craft or vehicle used to transport clients or supplies should be maintained in a safe and satisfactory mechanical condition.

• Any craft or vehicle used to transport clients or supplies should, for the credibility of the safari industry, be designed with the safety aspect in mind and be maintained in an aesthetically pleasing appearance befitting its purpose.

• Operators using single decked boats propelled by an outboard or inbound engine, should display an oncoming warning device of the following type and proportions, a flexible aerial capable of remaining upright, of a height not less than 3 meters, with a red flag at the top approximately 250 x 390 cms in size.

Conduct and ethics on safari

• The professional guide conducting a safari should, at all times, maintain a professional appearance and attitude which exudes a secure and friendly ambience to his/her clients and to any other persons encountered on the safari route.

• At no time should a professional guide compromise the safety of any person by irresponsible actions or his/her inability to interpret a potentially dangerous situation.

• It should be the responsibility of a professional guide to courteously point out to any person, any infringement of rules and regulations, or any potentially compromising or dangerous situation, which may cause inconvenience or harm to others.

• It is professional guide’s responsibility to report to the appropriate authorities any misconduct, infringement of rules and regulations or mis actions by any non-receptive or non co-operative person(s).

• It is the professional guide’s responsibility to assist any person in distress by means of communication to qualified assistance, relocating persons to a safe haven, personal indulgence in a problem situation. This should be done with an explanation to the guide’s own clients in order that the urgency of the situation can be understood by them. The guide should then render assistance without insensibility compromising his or her own safari.

• No professional guide shall allow any campsite to be vacated without clearing the area, extinguishing all fires, tidying the fireplace and checking the site in general in preparation for the next user. This applies to HATAB, DWNP and any other camp sites/areas.

• It is the professional guide’s responsibility to point out, recommend or suggest, any option, idea or thoughts which may be of valued assistance to the industry in general in order that all may benefit from these acceptable and legitimate referrals.

• It is the responsibility of the professional guide to respect all other people’s privacy and no unnecessary or loud noise should be made. Cassette players and radios should not be played in the parks and reserves. The guide must respect other tour operators. Do not drive in front of a stationary vehicle already watching something. Do not drive close to or through other people’s campsites. Do not drive fast in the vicinity of a camp or stationary vehicles. Do not use radio communications equipment within earshot of other safari operators.

• It will be the responsibility of all professional guides to ensure that all approaches to things of interest are undertaken in a courteous and considerate manner to other persons, flora and fauna. Wild animals have the right of way. Respect the privacy of animals, do not drive too close, do not spend more than 30 minutes with a sighting if there are more than 4 vehicles present. Make room for others if you have already spent more than 30 minutes at the site.

• The professional guide is there to practice and teach others about respect for the land and its’ inhabitants. All game park and reserve rules and regulations must be strictly adhered to at all time. The guide’s clients must be made aware of these regulations.


1. All DWNP rules and regulations must be strictly adhered to. Attention is drawn to the following points:-

  • No driving after prescribed hours
  • No vegetation may be cut
  • Off road driving is strictly prohibited.

2. Each site comprises ONE hectare and an Operator’s Campsite sign demarcates the center of the site. The camp must remain within a 50 meter radius of this sign.

3. The campsite must remain totally undeveloped

4. Operators must provide their own toilets which must be either chemical/water or bio-bogs. (The dimensions of the hole for sewage must not exceed 30 cms square x 1.5 metres deep). The hole should be filled in with soil when it is 30 cms from full. There must be one toilet per six persons in the camp. If staff members are not using the client toilets, a staff toilet must be provided. No showering is permitted in the DWNP facilities.

5. No rubbish pits may be dug or litter discarded at the campsite. All litter should be removed and the whole site checked before departure. Litter may not be deposited in public campground litter bins. All fire ashes must be buried.

6. No electronic music making equipment may be used at the campsites.

7. All tents should be as discreetly hidden from the game viewing roads as possible and be erected in such a way so as not to obstruct any existing game trails.

8. Other than the access track, no new roads may be made.

9. No firewood may be collected within one kilometer of any campsite.

10. At any one campsite, the number of people must not exceed 20 (including staff). The number of vehicles must not exceed two passenger and one supply. If more people or vehicles are involved, a second campsite must be booked to cater for this carrying capacity, even if the whole party then uses only one site.

11. Every vehicle and trailer in a HATAB site must bear Botswana license plates, be registered in the company’s name or that of a director of the company. The vehicle must display a company logo or name (of a minimum size of 30 cms in width) on both driver and passenger doors and must display a valid HATAB identity license disc on the windscreen.

12. The professional guide must be the driver of the passenger vehicle at all times. Any non-citizen guides must possess work and residence permits.

13. If it is necessary to sub-contract the safari to another company, the vehicles must bear the logo of the company who has booked the site. The person sub-contracted to run the safari on your behalf will be given a temporary vehicle license disc issued for the duration of the safari. This must be returned to the HATAB reservations office at the end of the safari and the onus is on the booking operator to ensure this is done.

14. No campsite may be booked for more than six consecutive nights and must be vacated by 11am on the morning of departure.


1. A fine of P1,000 per offence is immediately payable, for the first to fourth offence inclusive and P1,000 plus a one year ban from using HATAB sites for the fifth offence if committed within a 365 day time period from the first offence. Fines are to be paid within 30 days of notification letter. Failure to do so will result in an immediate ban of the use of mobile operator sites.

2. Any HATAB mobile operator who sees or suspects another mobile operator (including non-HATAB) contravening any of the above rules, may approach that operator/guide and make him attendant upon such rule. It is at the discretion of the guide whether or not to report the matter.

3. Any operator who finds a campsite in an unacceptable state on arrival, should first clean it up, then submit a written report to the HATAB reservations office for action.

4. Any operator who finds a campsite occupied by a non HATAB member must try to:

  1. request those persons to remove themselves from the site;
  2. report them to the nearest game scout camp and ask for them to be removed;
  3. report the incident in writing to the HATAB reservations office immediately.

5. All reports should contain the date, nature of complaint, campsite number, the name of guide/operator and the person making the report. All reports to be posted, faxed, e-mailed or handed in to the HATAB reservations office within 30 days of the incident. Address HATAB, Private Bag 32, Maun. Fax: 6861344, e-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

6. All such complaints will be dealt with by the HATAB Disciplinary Committee, who will after hearing the matter put their decision in writing. This Committee will have a meeting once per month. Any fines imposed will be payable to HATAB within 30 days of the date of the letter. If any serious or willful abuse of the HATAB rules, regulations or reservations system occurs the Disciplinary Committee has the right to waive the penalty system and effect an immediate ban on the use of HATAB sites by the offending company.

7. If a company wishes to appeal against a decision made by the Disciplinary Committee, the appeal should be lodged with the disciplinary committee within 14 days of the date of the Disciplinary Committee’s letter. Should you be dissatisfied with the Disciplinary Committee’s second ruling, a further final appeal should be lodged with the Director of HATAB within 14 days of the date of the second Disciplinary Committee’s letter. The decision of the Director will be final and binding upon HATAB and the operator.

Booking Conditions

1. HATAB sites must be booked in writing only by companies who:

  • Are fully paid up members of HATAB, are resident operators, and have completed the separate application form and been admitted to the mobile sector;
  • Are booking on their own behalf, special attention is being drawn to the fact that acting as an “Umbrella” company and making bookings on behalf of non-members is strictly forbidden.

2. The sites are combined into the following area groups for booking purposes:- MGR 1 to 5, MGR 7,8,X9 and 12, MGR 6, 11, 13, 14 and S9 CNP 1 to 5, CNP 7 to 10, CNP 16 to 20, CNP 22 to 25 DEC 1 to 4 NXAI 1 to 3 No company may hold more than 2 sites in one area per night. The exception to this is if space is available within 2 months of the night in question. Wait-listing to cater for this possibility is not permitted.

3. The booking fee is p110 per site per night (incl. VAT).

4. Payment for bookings made for the current year is due in full within 7 days of confirmation of booking. Payment for bookings made less than 2 calendar months prior to the departure date is due in full on booking.

5. If companies wish to submit bookings 1,2,3 or more years in advance, the reservation office is required to confirm those bookings on receipt and charge at the current rate. Payment is due within 30 days of confirmation. Any itinerary changes will be treated as new bookings/cancellations.

6. Payments not received timeously will automatically render the booking to be invalid and any waitlisted bookings will be accommodated in the sites concerned. Cheque payments must bear the name of the company making the booking.

7. Cancellations must be made in writing. Due to the possibility of cancellations getting lost in “cyberspace” or other unforeseen problems, the onus is on the member company to ensure that a response to their request for cancellation is received within 72 hours of making the cancellation, and that the cancellation reference given by the reservations office is in the correct numerical sequence. If a response is not received within 72 hours then the trip is not regarded as cancelled and the onus is on the member company to follow this up and obtain a cancellation reference from the reservations office. If a trip is in doubt of running, sites must be released 2 calendar months prior to the departure date. A refund of P65 per night plus VAT will then be effected. Refunds for cancelled sites will be paid during the month following the date on which the sites were originally held.

8. All sites are to be used for commercial safaris, however if a mobile member would like to use a site for family/friends and space is available, it will be permitted. The booking office must be notified that the reservation is for a family/friends safari. If a commercial safari is booked after the family booking has been made, the commercial safari will take preference.

9. The HATAB reservations office hours are from 8am to 1pm Monday-Friday. Vouchers will be issued one month in advance. Common sense exceptions to this will be entertained.