The critical details regarding "Wildlife and Ecology of East African Ecosystems" are now finalized. We have flight quotes and a finalized itinerary that sounds like the best one we have ever looked forward to. We are now GO for travel.
Time is of the essence to pay deposits for travel within Tanzania and to purchase flight tickets. Flight costs tend to rise unpredictably and we must secure the itinerary in Tanzania. Course dates are in the second half of August and may include the first couple of days of September.
The total cost for the course is going to be almost exactly what I initially estimated: $5500. With deposits of $350 from everyone already, this means that I must now ask for CERTIFIED CHEQUES in the amount of $5150. Include with your cheques a completed, SIGNED, and WITNESSED waiver, which is attached to this email.
Please make the certified cheques payable to "University of Ottawa" and send them ASAP to exactly this address (yes, in block capitals, as recommended by Canada Post):
DEPARTMENT OF BIOLOGY
UNIVERSITY OF OTTAWA
30 MARIE CURIE PVT
OTTAWA, ON K1N 6N5"
We cannot buy your flight tickets until we receive the certified cheques and your signed waiver. Delays may cause costs to rise and I would HATE to have this happen. So, please attend to this critical administration right away.
I am sorry for the need for certified cheques. The program has had a number of serious problems with regular cheques over the years that have really harmed course preparation and put plans in jeopardy.
The precise costs of the trip will only be known when we transfer funds for tickets and travel within Tanzania due to fluctuations in the value of the Canadian dollar relative to the US dollar (fees in Tanzania are paid in US funds). The cost per person breakdown looks approximately like this:
Flights to Tanzania: $2050
Tour costs: $3150
Tip costs for Tanzanian personnel: $105
Equipment costs: $41
Miscellaneous (first aid equipment, flight costs for instructors, buffer for US currency fluctuations): $380
Departmental contributions reduce per person costs to about $5500. The deposit for the course was $350, so that is deducted from the amount. I expect the course to run a very small deficit. Note that neither instructor receives any form of remuneration from course fees.
Please stand by for further communication. I will contact you about risk management, travel medicine, and the visa requirements for Tanzania that we must all address prior to departure.
In the meantime, feel free to contact me or my Department of Biology with any questions you may have.