David J. Cartwright
Managing Director - The Big Bad Boss
If you put all your fingers and toes together you would still not be able to add up to how many years ago David arrived in Southern Africa from the UK. Initially he trained and worked as a commercial pilot in the Eastern Cape before moving north to Namibia. Here he was lucky enough to meet his future wife & business partner, Charlotte. After a couple of years working in aviation and safari management they headed off to Botswana where they ran and built lodges together for four years.
The conclusion of their time in Botswana was marked by their marriage at Camp Okavango, after which they decided to return to Namibia and set up home in Windhoek. They purchased shares in what was then “Africa Tourist Info” and just under two years later bought the remaining holding of the company, and ATI Holidays as we know it was born.
David heads up the day to day operations at ATI Holidays, including marketing, specialist consulting, and building projects, and he is also responsible for the general sports and music education programme in the office. When he is not bemoaning the fate of his beloved Huddersfield Town, David is usually to be found drinking tea at his desk and is always available for travel advice and support for clients in country.
What are your ‘must have’ travel items? The wife and a credit card.
What is the most unusual client behaviour that you can tell us about? There really are just too many, but the Italian couple who, in the Okavango Delta, clubbed their hot water bottle to death with a walking stick takes some beating. They randomly assumed that the soft warm thing at the bottom of their bed was a snake!
What meal could you eat everyday? A med/hot Butter Chicken with garlic naan and jeera rice.
Tell us something that most people don’t know about you? I once lost a juggling competition to an alien with 10 arms. No really. I also used to be commercial pilot until the door fell off my plane – but that’s a story for another day, best told around a campfire, over a few glasses of Islay malt.