Information & Rules for December 2023
The Banjul banger challenge is to raise money for CARAVAN OF MERCY to fund its ongoing projects in The Gambia and West Africa. Your car must be handed over to Caravan of Mercy upon arrival to The Gambia to be auctioned for local projects. There are no exceptions.
PLEASE NOTE THE CAR MUST BE PURCHASED AT THE PERSONAL EXPENSE OF THE APPLICANTS. Personal expenses will be covered by each Participant.
If any participant gets support from his family and friends for the cost and expenses for the trip separately, there is no problem with this.
FUNDRAISING IS STRICTLY FOR THE CHARITY, EACH PARTICIPANT MUST RAISE A MINIMUM OF £1,500 GBP
The Leicester – Banjul Challenge or unofficially the Banger Car Rally Challenge is not a race, or a competition as stated on our website.
This is our second banger car challenge. Caravan Challenges have already completed 2 successful bike rides in the Gambia for the charity. After our first rally in Jan 2023 which proved successful, Caravan challenges is up for the next rally in December 2023.
We advise you take on this challenge as part of a team, so that you can support each other. We plan to create groups so that there are several cars travelling together. We hope all teams keep within the group to ensure no team is left on their own.
Basic mechanical knowledge is essential. Start practising by changing your car tyre. However, the advantage of going with a group is that help may be at hand if your car runs into difficulties. We strongly advise that all teams travel together in a group to help and assist each other at the time of need.
Mechanical reliability is the main obstacle to completing the course given that such vehicles are ordinary road cars and are mostly at the end of their lifetimes. Many cars cope very well until they must go through the desert and then almost all suffer a great deal due to high temperatures and dust. Once the cars make it to Banjul in The Gambia, they will be auctioned or donated to relevant projects.
This Challenge strongly recommends that the car be a Left-hand drive. Participants are advised that only left-hand vehicles are suitable for all countries in West Africa. The other benefit is it will fetch a better price when auctioned in the Gambia.
Right-hand Drive vehicles should be a last resort, that’s only if a team cannot source out a left-hand drive. A list of right-hand cars will be listed below, Participants will be asked to get one of them as they are commonly used in the Gambia and will be easily auctioned and fetch a reasonable price. A right-hand drive will sell for very cheap as the buyer will have to spend a lot of monies to convert to a Left-hand drive.
As this is a Banger Car Rally Challenge, all participants must be driving a car worth a minimum of £500 to a maximum of £800. Although there is no limit to how much you want to spend on your vehicle, please consider it needs to be affordable for people to purchase if auctioned. All participants should take time to prepare their vehicles for the challenge.
The route can be completed by almost any vehicle, and there is no advantage of having a 4×4 drive (except when others are stuck in the sand!). If you wish to bring a 4×4, you are most welcome.
The Teams will leave the UK on the Friday 22nd of December 2023 and registrations is open for this Challenge. Closing date for applicants will be 31st October 2023.
The Banjul Banger Car Challenge will start from the UK on Friday driving through France and Spain (exact route will be given closer to the date). Any team wishing to leave a few days earlier may do so. All teams will meet up in Tarifa (Southern tip of Spain) on the night of Sunday the 24th. All teams will cross over from Tarifa to Tangiers (Morocco) on the morning of the Monday 25th December 2023, driving South through Morocco, Western Sahara, Mauritania, and Senegal, arriving in Banjul in The Gambia. The route travels mostly on tarmac roads, but the highlight of this challenge will be the two-day crossing of the Sahara Desert. While in the Sahara Desert we hope to have some spiritual lessons. The total route is approximately 4000 miles and can comfortably be covered in two weeks Allah willing if all goes well. This is NOT a race. There is so much of interest en-route that it makes no sense to rush.
The actual Challenge starts in Tarifa, where hotel accommodation is provided. As the Participants bond over some Hot / Cold drinks, travelling groups will be formed for the journey ahead all the way South to our destination The Gambia.
Ahead lies adventure, different Cultures, People, Sand, Sea, and even more sand, experiencing the heat of the desert sun and tranquillity of the Sahara Desert plus the challenge of nursing your car all the way to destinations that most people would only consider flying to.
We aim to provide help through Mauritania, Senegal, and The Gambia Borders. All teams will be responsible for their own car insurance for the entirety of the journey.
Registration fee will include the following:
· Official car stickers, entry numbers and T shirts.
· One nights’ accommodation for 2 people, B&B in one of two designated hotels in Southern Spain. One night accommodation on reaching the Gambia.
· 2 meals for all the teams, one in Morocco, one in The Gambia.
· Support on the Morocco/Mauritania border.
· Behind the scenes administration to try and smooth passage through Senegal and The Gambia.
· Behind the scenes international liaison with partners and coordinators that allow this event to take place.
· Web site listing and Publicity.
· Inclusion within the formal lists of Participants that are issued to the Officials of some of the countries en-route.
· Discounted Flights will be sourced out by our recommended travel agent. Participants may source their own flights, if they wish and do their own bookings for their return from The Gambia. Booking your return flight in advance will save you a lot of money.
Approximate cost of Challenge:
After paying your registration fees, purchasing your vehicle and return ticket home, approx. cost per individual/Team will be shared with applicants via e-document. We recommend that each Applicant/participant have approx. £1000 at his disposal for the cost of the journey from UK to The Gambia.
An approx. detailed breakdown of costs will be shared with applicants after registration. Cost will be based on 2 people per team. If a team have 3 or more people, this will be worked out accordingly.
Each team is allowed to take any vehicle they wish, as mentioned above a Left-Hand drive is preferable but our partner in the Gambia has recommended commonly used vehicles in The Gambia. This will inshallah bring a better price when sold/auctioned. This will be emailed to each applicant after registration.
· Insurance/Vehicle Documents: Every applicant/team will be responsible for their own insurances (personal and vehicle) from the UK to the Gambia. Costs which will incur in Europe will be the responsibility of each Team. Costs which will incur in Africa will be indicated on the e -Document under the heading, Approximate cost of Challenge.
· Medical/Vaccinations: Information and all medical requirements for all countries will be the responsibility of each applicant/team to acquire. However, we will also include information on our E-Document.
· Passport: We recommend that your passport should be valid for a minimum period of 8 months from the date of travel from the UK.
· Travel Safety: Most of the countries are relatively safe to travel through, Alhamdulillah. Nevertheless, we recommend each applicant/team to make their own research. We will share a few videos from YouTube after registration. There are lots of videos on YouTube where individuals have shared their experiences.
· Visas: You need a visa to enter Mauritania. Visas are issued on arrival. The current cost is €55 (euros) or $60 (US dollars) in cash only. The visa issuing process at the border can take several hours. The organiser will Inshalla try all it can to make the crossing as easy and smooth as possible. No Visas required for Senegal and the Gambia for British Passports.
· Currency: It is highly recommended that you have a certain amount of Euros and US dollars with you including GBP. Currencies commonly used in Morocco, Western Sahara, Mauritania, and Senegal are Euros.
The Banger Car challenge registration will close on the 31st of October 2023 for the organisers to start the “Behind the scenes preparations”. Registration will be done on a first come first basis. Limited spaces are available. To avoid disappointment, please register ASAP. Any questions or queries, please contact Molana Ebrahim via email (Caravanchallenges@gmail.com) or by WhatsApp (07730984944)
For all updates, please keep an eye on the website which will be updated frequently. For registration information: NAVIGATE HERE!