Kruger Upgraded Adventure
About South Africa
Discover the abundance of wildlife in the Greater Kruger area during seven thrilling days of adventure in South Africa. A traditional mouth-watering South African Braai, or barbecue, welcomes you to this epic journey. Search for elephants, lions, and giraffes at one of the continent’s most celebrated national parks. This tour packs so much epic wildlife into a week that you will feel as though you have seen it all.
Your Foodie Moment: Traditional South Africa Braai (Barbecue), Johannesburg. Arrival transfer. Panorama Route scenic drive. Kruger National Park and private nature reserve wildlife safari drives in open vehicles. All transport between destinations and to/from included activities.
Savour a South African braai (barbecue), Drive the iconic Panorama Route, Spot the "Big Five’ wildlife safari drive inside Kruger National Park.
The information in this trip details document has been compiled with care and is provided in good faith. However it is subject to change, and does not form part of the contract between the client and the operator. The itinerary featured is correct at time of printing. It may differ slightly to the one in the brochure. Occasionally our itineraries change as we make improvements that stem from past travellers, comments and our own research. Sometimes it can be a small change like adding an extra meal along the itinerary. Sometimes the change may result in us altering the tour for the coming year. Ultimately, our goal is to provide you with the most rewarding experience. Please note that our brochure is usually released in November each year. If you have booked from the previous brochure you may find there have been some changes to the itinerary.
VERY IMPORTANT: Please ensure that you print a final copy of your Trip Details to review a couple of days prior to travel, in case there have been changes that affect your plans.
While it is our intention to adhere to the route described below, there is a certain amount of flexibility built into the itinerary and on occasion it may be necessary, or desirable to make alterations. The itinerary is brief, as we never know exactly where our journey will take us. Due to our style of travel and the regions we visit, travel can be unpredictable. The Trip Details document is a general guide to the tour and region and any mention of specific destinations or wildlife is by no means a guarantee that they will be visited or encountered. Aboard expedition trips visits to research stations depend on final permission.
Additionally, any travel times listed are approximations only and subject to vary due to local circumstances.
1) PASSPORT AND VISA
A valid passport and visas are required for entry into South Africa.
2) YELLOW FEVER
South Africa is to enforce new rules requiring proof of Yellow Fever vaccination for all travelers – even in airport transit – who have been in Zambia or other countries where the disease is endemic. The stricter guidelines, effective 01 Oct 2011, will see pax without an international Yellow Fever certificate refused entry.
3) TRAVEL DAYS
This is not a physically demanding journey; however, travelling can be difficult, with long drives and poor road conditions at times. Despite this, most clients feel that the diversity of the African landscape, countries, culture and wildlife are all well worth the experience. We use a comfortable and safe air-conditioned touring vehicle for the long drives.
Group Leader Description
On this tour, you will be accompanied by one group Chief Experience Officer (CEO). The Chief Experience Officer (CEO) will be the group manager/leader and driver- this person is a registered and licensed tourism guide, experienced in the routes travelled. You crew member has studied to have a broad knowledge base of the region’s history, cultures, and wildlife, and are legally certified to lead/guide tours in the regions visited. Most of our leaders in the region are from South Africa. As the group coordinator and manager, the aim of the group leader is to take the hassle out of your travels and to help you have the best trip possible. He/she will provide information on the places where you are travelling, and will take care of the small things so you can concentrate on enjoying your adventure. We also use local guides where we think more specific knowledge will add to the enjoyment of the places we are visiting.
Safari guides at the lodge (wildlife safari drives): All safari guides are certified safari guides, and are of course very skilled and experienced drivers. With years of experience taking wildlife seekers into the wildlife parks of Kruger National park and surrounding Game Reserves, our local safari guides are exactly what will make your safari a success.
Group Size Notes
Max 16, Avg 14.
6 breakfasts, 2 lunches, 6 dinners
Eating is a big part of travelling. Travelling with G Adventures you experience the vast array of wonderful food that is available in South Africa.
Air-conditioned touring vehicle, open safari vehicle, walking.
About our Transportation
The vehicle used will depend on the number of passengers as follows:
6-9 guests: 14 Seater Quantum (A/C)
3-5 guests: Mercedes Benz Vito OR Similar (A/C)
1-2 guests: Nissan Livina X-G or Toyota Avanaza (A/C)
This style of transportation is a comfortable way to travel through the region, allowing the group to travel through the cities and parks with ease, with more opportunities to stop and either wander around or view the sites.
For the wildlife safari drives on Days 3, 4 & 5 we use an open safari vehicle.
We believe single travellers should not have to pay more to travel so our group trips are designed for shared accommodation and do not involve a single supplement. Single travellers joining group trips are paired in twin or multi-share accommodation with someone of the same sex for the duration of the trip. Some of our Independent trips are designed differently and single travellers on these itineraries must pay the single trip price.
Guest house (2 nts), comfortable safari camp (2 nt), comfortable tent or chalets (2 nts).
My Own Room
Please note that if you have booked the “My Own Room” option for this tour, you will receive your own single room for all night stops
Private Reserve location changes
On some occasions, we may need to change accommodation or even use a different private reserve, if space is unavailable. In such a case, be assured we will choose other Lodges or comfort camps within the Greater Kruger area of equal quality.
Karongwe Private reserve
We use various accommodations within the reserve based on availability. During your time here, the group will either stay in lodge rooms or very comfortable permanent tents – both of equal quality and with similar amenities.
-Please note that hot water shortages, low water pressure and power outages can occur in Southern Africa. We appreciate your patience and understanding that these occurrences are outside of our control.
-Wifi is available in most places (extra charge may apply), but in remote areas there can be service interruptions
-A/C is not generally available in the accommodations we use, really it isn’t needed as evenings tend to cool down. Floor or ceiling fans are usually available
For details of your joining hotel please refer to your tour voucher, G Account, the G Adventures App or contact your travel agent.
The nearest international airport to your joining hotel is the Johannesburg International Airport (JNB).
**Please note, the arrival transfer included occurs on Day 1 of the tour. If you plan to arrive prior to Day 1, you will be required to arrange pre-tour accommodation through G Adventures to be eligible for the transport from the airport. Due to customer experience and quality considerations, all services related to the tour must be continuous.
Please note that Day 1 is an arrival day and no activities have been planned, so you may arrive at any time. Similarly the last day is a departure day in which no activities are planned.
Your CEO will organize a welcome meeting in the evening of day 1, during which you will meet other tour participants and receive information about general and specific aspects of the trip.
To receive your complimentary transfer, proceed through the international or domestic arrivals area and look for a transfer person holding a G Adventures sign with your name. Ask him/her what hotel he/she will take you to (do not volunteer this information). Then present your passport for proof of identity.
We don’t expect any problems, and nor should you, but if for any reason you are unable to commence your trip as scheduled, as soon as possible please contact our local office in South Africa (Emergency Contact). If you have pre-booked an airport transfer and have not made contact with our representative within 30 minutes of clearing customs and immigration, we recommend that you make your own way to the hotel, following the Joining Instructions. Please apply to your travel agent on your return for a refund of the transfer cost if this occurs.
Should you need to contact us during a situation of dire need, it is best to first call either the G Adventures Local Representative (if one is listed below) or our G Adventures Local Office. If for any reason you do not receive an immediate answer, please leave a detailed message and contact information, so they may return your call and assist you as soon as possible.
If you have purchased an arrival through G Adventures or if an arrival transfer is included in the cost of your tour, please note that:
Your arrival transfer has been arranged based on flight information provided to us. If you are advised of a flight schedule change within 48 hours of your scheduled arrival time, we will do our best to rearrange your arrival transfer however we cannot guarantee this. If your arrival transfer does not arrive within 30 minutes after you have exited the arrivals area please take a taxi to your start point hotel.
EMERGENCY CONTACT NUMBERS
G Adventures Local Operator (South Africa)
After Hours Emergency number:
From outside South Africa: +27 82 5757 434
From within South Africa: 082 5757 434
If you are unable for any reason to contact our local office, please call the numbers listed below which will connect you directly with our Sales team who will happily assist you. Hours of operation by region can be found here.
Toll-free, North America only: 1 888 800 4100
Calls from UK: 0344 272 0000
Calls from Germany: 0800 365 1000
Calls from Australia: 1 300 796 618
Calls from New Zealand: 0800 333 307
Outside North America, Australia, New Zealand, Germany and the UK: +1 416 260 0999
What to Take
You will be on the move a lot, so our advice is to pack as lightly as possible. Your baggage should be clearly labeled and restricted to one soft compact suitcase, or sports bag, maximum 15kg, plus a daypack. Luggage limits on airlines are strictly enforced and space on vehicles is limited. Porters are not often available, so be prepared to carry your own bags. It is important to pack clothes for warm days and cool evenings, as well as a warm jacket for early morning wildlife safari drives. A set of smart casual clothes is also advisable.
The Southern Hemisphere essentially has the opposite weather to the Northern Hemisphere. The winter months of June, July and August, whilst clear and warm during the day (up to 25 degrees), can drop down to single figures and even below freezing at night. Between September and May it is considerably warmer with the time between October and March being the hottest, getting up to the high 30C and sometimes above. However it is always a dry heat and the temperature does drop at night. The wet season is between November and February, but this is not a bad time to go, as it generally does not rain for very long. We strongly recommend lots of layers to wear from the start of the day until the night. You might still need to wear a fleece jacket in the mornings, a t-shirt during the day and again the fleece jacket at sunset time. A woolen hat is also very much recommendable for the cold winter’s early morning wildlife safari drives.
• Long-sleeved shirts or sweater
• Warm gloves
• Warm hat
• Warm layers
• Flight info (required) (Printouts of e-tickets may be required at the border)
• Insurance info (required) (With photocopies)
• Passport (required) (With photocopies)
• Required visas or vaccination certificates (required) (With photocopies)
• Vouchers and pre-departure information (required)
• Binoculars (optional)
• Camera (With extra memory cards and batteries)
• Cash, credit and debit cards
• Day pack (Used for daily excursions or short overnights)
• Ear plugs
• First-aid kit (should contain lip balm with sunscreen, sunscreen, whistle, Aspirin, Ibuprofen, bandaids/plasters, tape, anti-histamines, antibacterial gel/wipes, antiseptic cream, Imodium or similar tablets for mild cases of diarrhea, rehydration powder, water purification tablets or drops, insect repellent, sewing kit, extra prescription drugs you may be taking)
• Flashlight/torch (Headlamps are ideal)
• Fleece top/sweater
• Locks for bags
• Long pants/jeans
• Outlet adapter
• Personal entertainment (Reading and writing materials, cards, music player, etc.)
• Reusable water bottle
• Small travel towel
• Toiletries (Preferably biodegradable)
• Watch and alarm clock
• Waterproof backpack cover
• Windproof rain jacket
• Smart outfit (For evenings out)
• Shorts/skirts (Longer shorts/skirts are recommended)
• Sun hat/bandana
Note: Seasons in Southern Africa are quite extreme. Winters (May to October) can be really cold and summers will be really hot. It is important to pack clothes for warm days and cool evenings, as well as a warm jacket for early morning wildlife safari drives.
Laundry can be done at the lodge (at own expense).
Visas and Entry Requirements
All countries require travellers to have a valid passport (with a minimum 6 months validity), and you are required to acquire the entry visas for each of the countries visited.
Please double check with your agent and/or visa agent what the visa requirements is for each country that you will be traveling to. Some countries do require that you get your visa before arrival. If you show up at a border and should you not have the required visa you will be denied entry to the country and be send back to the closest embassy/high commission to get the visa. All arrangements and expenses for that will be at your own cost. The CEO will assist you with travel arrangements but will not be able to accompany you. You will also have to catch up with the group at their next destination at own cost.
We have been experiencing a lot of problems with people that need visas for Namibia and Malawi. Namibian and Malawian visas is not available at the border, so please make very sure if you do need a visa before arrival.
The information provided here is to be used as a guide only. Please consult with the relevant embassy or your travel agency before you travel. We cannot take any responsibility whatsoever for the use of this information.
Visas are not issued at South African ports of entry, and airline officials are obliged to insist on visas before allowing passengers to board. If you arrive without a visa, immigration officials are obliged to put you onto a flight back to your home country.
If you are a passport holder of the following countries/areas you do not need a visa for stays of LESS THAN 90 days:
African Union / Unity Laissez Passes, Andorra, Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Botswana, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Czech Republic, Denmark, Ecuador, Finland, Japan, Liechtenstein, Luxemburg, Malta, Monaco, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Paraguay, Portugal, San Marino, Singapore, Spain, St Vincent & the Grenadines, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom, Uruguay, Venezuela, United States of America, France, Germany, Greece, Iceland, Israel, Italy, Jamaica
If you are a passport holder of the following countries/areas you do not need a visa for stays of LESS THAN 30 days:
Antigua and Barbuda,Barbados,Belize,Benin,Bolivia,Hong Kong,Hungary,Jordan,Lesotho,Malaysia Cape Verde,Costa Rica,Cyprus,Gabon,Guyana,Peru,Poland,Seychelles,Slovak Republic ,South Korea,Swaziland,Thailand,Turkey,Zambia
The visa fee is different for every nationality, so please check this with your agent or closest embassy.
**Please note for those traveling with minors: Effective June 01, 2015, anyone under the age of 18 will not be allowed entry without an unabridged birth certificate. If they are not travelling with both parents or adults who are not the child’s parents, further documentation is required. Please check with your South African embassy or consulate for the most current list of document requirements.
This information is accurate at the time of writing, and please contact your local embassy or consulate for the most up-to-date visa requirements and costs, regarding these, and the other countries visited, or see your travel agent. It is your responsibility to have the correct travel documentation.
Detailed Trip Notes
TRIP SPECIFIC DETAILS
Southern Africa is renowned for its excellent outdoor living climate. The winter months are from May to September and are characterized by cold nights and pleasant days. Summer is from October to April and starts off with increasing dry heat and dust. Rains generally only start from mid to late December and last until March; this period is hot and humid.
South African Rand is the best currency to use in South Africa.
KRUGER NATIONAL PARK
The world-renowned Kruger National Park offers a wildlife experience that ranks with the best in Africa.
Established in 1898 to protect the wildlife of the South African Lowveld, this national park of nearly 2 million hectares, SANParks – Kruger National Park is unrivalled in the diversity of its life forms and a world leader in advanced environmental management techniques and policies.
FAUNA AND FLORA
Approximately 145 mammal species occur in the park. It is possible to see all the classical African wildlife, including elephant, black and white rhino, hippopotamus, giraffe, zebra, buffalo, warthog and many antelope species.
Large carnivores include lion, leopard, cheetah, wild dog and spotted hyena.
There are also many smaller mammals.
Kruger has a list of almost 500 species of birds, some of which are not to be found elsewhere in South Africa.
Hornbills, Starlings, Vultures, Rollers, Bee-eaters and Shrikes are found here birdwatchers can look forward to pursuing the big 6 (Saddle-billed Stork, Kori Bustard, Martial Eagle, Lappet-faced Vulture, Pel’s Fishing Owl and Ground Hornbill).
The far north of the park (Pafuri and Punda Maria regions) is regarded as one of the birding Mecca’s of the country (with many regional rarities to be found), yet birding throughout the entire park is excellent.
Eagles are common: Bateleur, Martial, Black-breasted Snake, Brown Snake, African Hawk, African Fish and Tawny are all regularly seen, and in summer: Wahlberg’s, Steppe, Lesser Spotted.
The Park’s numerous water points make for excellent bird watching, while the rest camps and picnic sites are exceptionally rewarding for birders.
With Kruger being so vast it naturally has a tremendous botanic diversity. Simplistically the park can be divided into 16 macro ecozones.
The northern half of the park, north of the Olifants River is predominantly mopane veld, while south of the Olifants the ecozones are thornveld. There are 336 tree species in the park.
Every traveller is different and therefore spending money requirements will vary. Some travellers may drink more than others while other travellers like to purchase more souvenirs than most. Please consider your own spending habits when it comes to allowing for drinks, shopping and tipping. Please also remember the following specific recommendations when planning your trip.
The currency in South Africa is the South African Rand (ZAR).
Rand can be obtained locally by changing foreign currency or by using ATMs (where available) which will disperse local currency. Your CEO will inform you where you can change money throughout the tour and approximately how much money you will need.
The easiest foreign currency to exchange for locally for any of the local currencies is the $US; however the British Pound and Euro may also be exchanged as well. Please note that due to past problems with forgery, $US notes that are older than year 2006 are not accepted in Africa.
Large note ($US 50, $US 100 etc) can be difficult to change in some places, but will gain you the best exchange rate.
If you plan to rely on cash, please bring foreign currency (Euro, Pound, USD) with you, as it is often expensive to buy these currencies locally. And in more rural areas, it is often not likely.
If you plan to buy your visas at borders, you will need to bring $USD cash to pay for these visas. Please note you cannot use the local currency or any other currency to buy these visas- they must be purchased in USD.
Please do not bring Travellers’ cheques toAfrica. They are difficult if not impossible to exchange in many places.
Visa/Plus system cards are the most widely accepted debit cards. it is harder to find machines Mastercard/Cirrus cards. We highly recommend that if you hold a Mastercard, you obtain a Visa card prior to departure and travel with both. This is also useful should somethingunforeseen happen to one of your cards during your travels.
While there are many ATMs in the major centres, there are no guarantees that your credit or debit cards will actually work in Africa. Check with your bank.
Credit cards can be used in major cities and towns ONLY but please do not rely on them as a method of payment because they are generally not widely accepted. You should be aware that to purchase products or services on a credit card a fee of 5%-10% usually applies. The majority of our optional activities can also be paid by credit card. Your CEO will advise on these.
Please note that in many areas there may be occasional power-outages, where there will be no electricity for hours at a time. In addition, ATMs outside of larger centers often run out of cash or can be out of order unexpectedly. These factors could affect your ability to access money from ATMs. As such, please do not rely on credit or debit cards as your only source of money.
A combination of foreign currency and debit/credit cards for cash advances is best. Always take more rather than less, as you don’t want to spoil the trip by constantly feeling short of funds.
As currency exchange rates can fluctuate often we ask that you refer to the following website for daily exchange rates: www.xe.com.
Please also make sure you have access to at least an additional USD $200 (or equivalent) as an ‘emergency’ fund, to be used when circumstances outside our control (ex. a natural disaster) require a change to our planned route. This is a rare occurrence!
Tipping is optional and related to good service received. This is just a guideline that guests can use:
PORTERS: R7.00 per bag ;
WAITERS (Restaurants): 10% of the total bill as a general guideline;
CHAMBER MAIDS: R10.00 per day as a guideline;
BARMEN/LADIES: 10% of the total bill as a general guideline;
GAME RANGERS: R50.00 per activity / TRACKER: R20.00 per activity;
CEO & DRIVER: This is up to the discretion of the group/guests – CEO/guide = R50.00 per day and driver = R30.00 per day
No optional activities
Please note inoculations may be required for the country visited. It is your responsibility to consult with your travel doctor for up to date medical travel information well before departure.
We recommend you contact your family physician, or your local travel clinic for the most up-to-date health information at least one month before departure. Travelers should also carry a basic first-aid kit and hand sanitizers / antibacterial wipes. Travellers to South Africa should observe similar precautions to those taken elsewhere in Africa. Medical facilities are basic throughout these countries. For your own safety, we strongly recommend that you advise your CEO of any medical condition that may affect you while travelling with the group. Be aware that all safaris enter malaria areas. Your doctor should be able to recommend the necessary prophylactics. Please ensure you have all the inoculations recommended by your doctor.
Yellow Fever Certificate Note:
It is compulsory to show a valid Yellow Fever Certificate if you are travelling to South Africa from a Yellow Fever endemic country. Entry into South Africa when travelling from the following countries (but not limited to) will require a Yellow Fever Certificate: Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania, Malawi, Zambia and Zimbabwe. This rule is also applicable to airport transit. If other countries not endemic to Yellow Fever have been visited (such as Botswana and Namibia), after visiting an endemic country such as Zambia, then a Yellow Fever certificate will still be required on entry into South Africa.
According to guidelines effective from October 2011, entry into Zambia, from South Africa also requires a yellow fever certificate although South Africa is a not endemic to Yellow Fever.
A valid Yellow Fever Certificate is also needed for entry into the following countries when coming from a Yellow Fever endemic country:
Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania (including Zanzibar), Malawi and Zambia.
Recommended that guests take MALARIA tablets as they are going to KNP Area. (Speak to your docter regarding malaria). Guests can bring insect repellent spray/cream or buy when they arrive in South Africa for example: Peacefull Sleep / Tabard.
Safety and Security
Many national governments provide a regularly updated advice service on safety issues involved with international travel. We recommend that you check your government’s advice for their latest travel information before departure. We strongly recommend the use of a neck wallet or money belt while travelling, for the safe keeping of your passport, air tickets, travellers’ cheques, cash and other valuable items. Leave your valuable jewellery at home – you won’t need it while travelling. Many of the hotels we use have safety deposit boxes, which is the most secure way of storing your valuables. A lock is recommended for securing your luggage. When travelling on a group trip, please note that your CEO has the authority to amend or cancel any part of the trip itinerary if it is deemed necessary due to safety concerns. Your CEO will accompany you on all included activities. During your trip you will have some free time to pursue your own interests, relax and take it easy or explore at your leisure. While your CEO will assist you with options available in a given location please note that any optional activities you undertake are not part of your itinerary, and we offer no representations about the safety of the activity or the standard of the operators running them. Please use your own good judgment when selecting an activity in your free time. Although the cities visited on tour are generally safe during the day, there can be risks to wandering throughout any major city at night. It is our recommendation to stay in small groups and to take taxis to and from restaurants, or during night time excursions.
Protests and Demonstrations- Protests and demonstrations, even those that are well intended, have the potential to turn violent with no warning. Counter protests can also turn violent. Action by security forces to disperse demonstrators and protesters may occur at any time. If you are in an area where demonstrators or protesters are gathering, avoid the temptation of staying for a good photo opportunity and leave the area immediately.
Water based activities have an element of danger and excitement built into them. We recommend only participating in water based activities when accompanied by a guide(s). We make every reasonable effort to ensure the fun and adventurous element of any water based activities (in countries with varying degrees of operating standards) have a balanced approach to safety. It is our policy not to allow our CEOs to make arrangements on your behalf for water based activities that are not accompanied by guide(s).
Swimming, including snorkeling, is always at your own risk.
We take all prudent measures in relation to your safety. For ways to further enhance your personal safety while traveling, please visit:
Trip Specific Safety
GENERAL: Look after your personal items. Do not leave your valuables visible in a car or hotel room. Lock your hotel room door when you enter and when you leave. Do not carry large amount of cash on you. Avoid displaying flashy jewellery and carry your camera in its pack on your shoulder rather than around your neck. Keep your passport, airline tickets, money, important documents locked up in your room/safe – do not carry it with you.
Vital Information when you are staying the KNP or any Reserve: Please ensure that your stay is happy and safe by taking note of a few simple warnings. You will be sharing your stay with many exciting and unusal creatures but without knowledge some of them could be dangerous: Example: Bats, Spiders, Snakes, Scorpions, Malaria Zone. If you must walk around at night please DO NOT DO SO WITHOUT A TORCH. Remember: by feeding any wildlife, you are signing their death warrant as they become aggressive!
A Couple of Rules
Illegal drugs will not be tolerated on any trips. Possessing or using drugs not only contravenes the laws of the land but also puts the rest of the group at risk. Smoking marijuana and opium is a part of local culture in some parts of the world but is not acceptable for our travellers. Our philosophy of travel is one of respect towards everyone we encounter, and in particular the local people who make the world the special place it is. The exploitation of prostitutes is completely contrary to this philosophy. Our CEOs have the right to expel any member of the group if drugs are found in their possession or if they use prostitutes.
Travel Insurance: Travel insurance is compulsory in order to participate on any of our trips. When travelling on a group trip, you will not be permitted to join the group until evidence of travel insurance has been sighted by your CEO, who will take note of your insurance details. When selecting a travel insurance policy please bear in mind that all clients must have medical coverage and that we require a minimum coverage of USD 200,000 for repatriation and emergency rescue. We strongly recommend that the policy also covers personal liability, cancellation, curtailment and loss of luggage and personal effects. If you have credit card insurance we require proof of purchase of the trip (a receipt of credit card statement) with a credit card in your name. Contact your bank for details of their participating insurer, the level of coverage and emergency contact telephone number.
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Check-in times and baggage allowances/restrictions vary by airline and can change at any time. For the most up-to-date information for your flight, please contact your airline. We recommend checking in online in advance to avoid potential delays at the airport.
Chief Experience Officer (CEO)/driver throughout, local guides and rangers.
PRODUCT_LINE: DSEJ, ID: 24445