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Need to book in advance for elephant camps?

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Sydney, Australia
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Need to book in advance for elephant camps?

This might be a silly question, so, please excuse me!

Normally, we only book hotels and transport in advance, but other than setting out a general and flexible itinerary of our travel plans, we don't usually book any day tours to sights and attractions until we reach our destination (usually book day tours via the hotel).

For the reputable elephant camps like Patara Elephant Farm and Elephant Nature Park (and other well-rated ones in Chiang Mai), would it be a bad idea to leave it until we arrive in Chiang Mai before we make reservations? Our trip would be in mid-January, which I realise is peak season as well.

Would these elephant camps have some sort of allocations for those choosing to book via their hotel (and pretty much close to the day we want to go)?

Thanks for any advice and help!

Chiang Mai, Thailand
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1. Re: Need to book in advance for elephant camps?

During high season i think it's a good idear to book in advance, they accept a limited number of tourist per day.

Booking from the Hotel it's more expensive, you should choose an Agency, they have lower rate than the hotel counter. I can propose some good agency.

Sydney, Australia
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2. Re: Need to book in advance for elephant camps?

Thank, Simon. I appreciate the advice. :)

We'll have to do a re-think about how best to plan our days.

Chiang Mai, Thailand
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3. Re: Need to book in advance for elephant camps?

Yes, definitely need to book in advance, even in the low season. for example Patara only takes 10 ppl a day, which fills up quickly. And as SimonBV said don't book through hotel or tour guide. Call the place directly(or email) and the english speaking reception will book you at the real cost.

Sydney, Australia
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4. Re: Need to book in advance for elephant camps?

Thank you for that, CNXSteve! Much appreciated! :)

brisbane
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5. Re: Need to book in advance for elephant camps?

We went to the elephant nature park family of 5 booked online when we were in Chiangmai had an awesome day our youngest was 2 and the staff were fabulous

Sydney, Australia
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6. Re: Need to book in advance for elephant camps?

Thank you, lee202! It's so good to hear about your experience! :)

Muang Chiang Mai...
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7. Re: Need to book in advance for elephant camps?

Either low or high season, you still need to book in advance. Particulary, high season there will be more tourists for sure, but still you don' t have to really book in advance. My point is if you want to go tomorrow, you can book it today. If it's fully booked. You can try two days ahead. That's it.

For good manners, you can book elephant camps or any tours via hotel. Normally, the more expensive your hotel is, the more expensive your tour price will be, not always.

You should try to go get a tour information and buy tours from other agency around city which that way you would get cheaper tour price, sometime alot cheaper with the same standard. Tour companies treat people the same either you come from expensive or budget hotel.

Muang Chiang Mai...
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8. Re: Need to book in advance for elephant camps?

And another thing, by common sense tourists will call and try to buy a ticket from the exact place they want to go hoping there will be english speaker there to help which some company have those supporters, it's great.

But most of the time tourist will end up paying more than they should. Why?

Example, michael and maria want to go see Thai boxing tonight. They go to the stadium directly and pay 300 baht each. They satisfied. Next day they see a sign near there hotel and decide to go ask for a ticket, just curious. The tour agency say 250 baht each.

You now why? Because most of the companies need tour agency to help them sell tickets so they sell ticket at discount rate to tour agencies. Then tour agencies can survive. But still having a tough time living at low season.

Santarem, Portugal
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9. Re: Need to book in advance for elephant camps?

I will be in Chiang Mai between 7 and 10 January and would help what can I do there is that I could help?

I want to make an elephant ride, visit the most important monuments of the city, perhaps a stroll through the golden triangle and know where you can eat for good prices,

thank you

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10. Re: Need to book in advance for elephant camps?

zb007, you might consider posting this as a separate thread, so, more can see it. Also, do take a look at the list of 'things to do' in Chiang Mai, as they might give you a few pointers of what to see/do.