Imagine Antarctica Webinar

Expert Advice on Travel to Antarctica

Friday, June 19, 2020

Here at Antarctica21, we recently held a webinar called “Imagine Antarctica” where our host, Renato Marin, our market engagement manager, sat down with a cup of coffee to chat with two of our most experienced team members to learn about travel to Antarctica. Mariano Curiel, our Direction of Antarctica Expeditions, joined in from his home in Bariloche, Argentina and Reinoud Daniels joined in from his home in Squamish, British Columbia. Combined these two Antarctica experts have more than 250 trips between them to the 7th continent. The chat covered everything from the best time to travel to Antarctica, what to expect from the wildlife and epic landing sites. It also included some fun details of our teams experiences while in Antarctica.

To tune into our “Imagine Antarctica” and hear from Mariano and Reinoud yourself, watch the complete webinar record below.

There were also a lot of questions that we couldn’t get to during the actual webinar, so we have included those below for your reference as well.

Learn more about travel Antarctica with these follow-up questions:

1. Are the ships warm on the inside? You can expect a comfortable and warm environment onboard all three of our ships. For more information on how to choose your ship read more here.

2. Are children allowed on Antarctica21’s expeditions to Antarctica? Children are admitted from the age of 8 years if accompanied by an adult who will take responsibility and sign a waiver. A 5% discount on the rate per person is offered for children up to 12 years of age.

3. For photographers, do you need a 600 mm lens to capture wildlife or is 300 mm enough? If you are passionate about photography, do not forget a good zoom lens to shoot wildlife while avoiding close approaches. A 300mm lens is a good lens size for Antarctic wildlife photography. Also, take with you a good supply of memory cards and spare batteries since cold temperatures can reduce their lifespan. The use of recreational use of drones is not allowed in Antarctica.

4. What sort of experience do you expedition crews have before starting there? What kind of training do you provide? Members of our expedition team must be able to perform at the highest level in extreme conditions, or extended periods of time? We have an extended training for all team members. Our mission is to connect our guests to the places we explore. To become that link, the team needs hard technical skills and experience, but also empathy, which allows them to feel and understand the emotions of our guests. We focus on building diverse teams in terms of gender, nationality, skills, backgrounds etc. Finally, we look for people who feel deep respect for the Antarctic environment. A team needs to be confident in their plans but ultimately humble to the forces of nature.

5. What clothing we would need to bring, is there clothing loaned to guests? The average temperature in the Antarctica Peninsula area during the austral summer is about 0º C (32º F), although sometimes it may feel a little lower because of the wind chill factor. For this reason, it is best to wear several layers of light, warm clothing, with a windproof and waterproof jacket and pants as the outer layer. The suggested clothing for Antarctica is very similar to that recommended for skiing. Antarctica21 provides boots to all their guests. To see a packing list visit our Travel Tips page.

6. What is the length of the flight from Punta Arenas, Chile to King George island in Antarctica? The flight is 2-hours.

7. What is the maximum weight limit for luggage on an Antarctica expedition? Luggage should not exceed the 20 kg (44 Lb.) weight limit.

8. Can you see emperor penguins? Emperor penguins are located more inland and normally not seen in and around the Antarctica Peninsula.

9. Are there wet landings where you must wade from the zodiac to the expedition ship? Most landings in Antarctica are “wet landings”, the best footwear is knee-high waterproof boots. You will not need to carry them with you since Antarctica21 will provide you with a pair of thermal rubber boots before arriving in Antarctica. To ensure a good fitting, we will request your shoe size in the participation form.

10. What time of year has the longest amount of sunlight? December & January have the longest days in Antarctica.

11. What are the walking conditions during an excursion in Antarctica? What type of mobility should guests have for an expedition trip? Our air-cruise expeditions are suitable for adventurous travelers who enjoy full mobility and reasonably good health. Expedition travel to Antarctica requires flexibility and adaptation to ever-changing circumstances. There is no airport or port infrastructure at King George Island, or anywhere in the Antarctic Peninsula. After landing and a walk to shore, travelers reach their ship by Zodiac boat. While we do get a lot of good weather during our trips, you should expect snowy, windy, and other conditions for landings during expeditions.

12. Should flight delays be expected due to weather on an air-cruise? This is Antarctica and weather plays an important role in what we can and cannot do on and off the ship, therefore we are very fluid and flexible with our operations and itinerary to take advantage of any wildlife and weather opportunities that may present itself to maximize our time or experiences. At Antarctica21, we only operated one flight per departure. We have an expert team and office on the ground in Punta Arenas, Chile to assist with any weather delays and can react without delay to get a flight in the air should a weather window become available. We have more experience than any other operator given the number of flights we have under our belt, and very important, we have absolute priority with flights given our relationship with the airline. To read more about weather and air-cruises see our blog post here.

Contact us today to learn more about travel to Antarctica.

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