How To Choose A Proper Rafting Company
There are many factors that should be considered when choosing a company to take you on a white water raft trip. The choice made can either turn your trip into an amazing memory, or an unforgettable nightmare. So it’s important to choose wisely from the start. What follows is an explanation of the areas that should be touched upon when seeking out a whitewater rafting company.
One thing for certain is that people expect to have an enjoyable time and remain safe while on a rafting vacation. So choosing the best river that matches a groups or persons capabilities is paramount. The fun will be had so long as the challenge is there, and the fun can be enjoyed so long as there is no looming feeling of fear. Fear comes about from uncertainty, so in order to enjoy yourself, you are going to need to be able to trust your rafting guides. In order for trust to be achieved, you are going to need to clarify a few things with the rafting company.
You are going to want to choose a rafting company that does their best to create the safest conditions for rafters. Meaning that the proper equipment is provided for such as helmets and life vests, and instructions are given for newcomers/beginners about rafting etiquette and what to do if they are ejected into the water. What has to be remembered is that while rafting, you are not in a controlled environment. But many of the dangers can be mitigated if attention is paid. A proper rafting company knows these dangers as well as the best course of action to lesson the chance for a problem to occur.
All rafting companies will offer life vests, as thats the most basic of safety equipment to be provided. But you should ask to see what other options for safety are available. The next most important that should be considered is a helmet. These are the two most critical items to have whilst rafting. After that, neoprene clothing items are optional to fight against the cold. Even gloves may be provided to protect you hands and provide extra grip.
Does the Rafting Company Help to Determine the Most Suitable River
Safety is not only dictated by the protective items worn, but is also determined by the river chosen for rafting, and the experience of the rafters themselves. You will want to discuss the experience of all the rafters in a group participating, and see what the rafting guides believe is the most suitable level of rapid that should be attempted safely. This is an important point, and should not be over looked or forgotten. Chances are though that a proper rafting company will not allow this point to be untouched.
The Experience of the Guides as Well as the Company Itself
You will want to inquire to see how long a rafting company has been in business and weigh that information accordingly. Especially depending on the rivers they raft. A company may be well versed with Colorado white water rafting, but may be new to rafting Arizona. Meaning that perhaps they wouldn’t be the most trusted if they’ve just began to raft a certain river. Experience, after all, does count for certain rivers. Beyond a companies experience on certain rivers, you will want to find out the overall experience of the rafting guides themselves, as well as their experience on specific rivers.
The Total River Options Available
If a rafting company only offers a handfull of possible rivers to raft down, they will be trying to get anyone they can to raft those certain rivers. Which could be either below, or worst, above a groups skill level. Either way, you want to see how many options are available for certain rivers, as more choices are better than fewer.
Number of Activities Being Offered
At times, you may want to do other things beside raft. This could include anything outdoor related, such as horseback riding, mountain biking, off-roading, or simply hiking around. These activities are not always allowed or offered for certain companies, so if it’s something you are interested in, you will want to check ahead of time to see what options are available.
Company Awards, Prestige, or Recognitions Received
You will want to see if a rafting company has received any awards or recognitions in the past. This should only hold a certain amount of weight in deciding a company, but it certainly helps to highlight the shining stars from those that dont.
Recommendations and Customer Testimonials
Nothing can bring about trust for anything more than a friendly referral. If a family member of friend says that a certain company is trustworthy, than that’s really the most important but of information that can be obtained. If you do not know anyone that has been on a rafting trip, then you will have to read through company customer testimonials to see what they have said. These are generally worthwhile to read through, but be careful. Often times companies add in “fake” testimonials to bolster their reviews. It can be hard to sort through the fakes at times. But if a statement seems genuine, than chances are it really is.