Are you planning to travel to Kenya?
If so, it’s important to be aware of the current travel requirements in place due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
As of May 20, 2023, all travelers arriving in Kenya through any point of entry are no longer required to show proof of COVID-19 vaccination or a pre-departure COVID-19 test.
However, travelers arriving with flu-like symptoms will be required to fill out a passenger locator form on the ‘jitenge’ platform.
It’s important to note that visitors are required to obtain an e-visa before departing for Kenya.
If you require a multiple-entry visa, be sure to apply well in advance of your travel date.
Additionally, Kenya’s Ministry of Health recently announced that all passengers age 18 and over arriving in Kenya will need to present a valid certificate of COVID-19 vaccination.
All passengers exiting Kenya will also need to present a valid certificate of COVID-19 vaccination.
Unvaccinated travelers over the age of 5 years must have a negative COVID-19 PCR test 72 hours before departure and will also be required to take a rapid antigen test at their own cost ($30) upon arrival.
Passport and Visa Requirements
If you are planning a trip to Kenya, it is important to know the passport and visa requirements. Here’s what you need to know before you go.
To enter Kenya, your passport must be valid for at least six months from the date of entry, and it must have at least two blank pages. If your passport does not meet these requirements, you may be denied entry into the country. It is important to check your passport’s expiration date well before your planned travel dates to avoid any issues.
Visa Types and Application Process
Most visitors to Kenya will need a visa to enter the country. There are several types of visas available, including single-entry, multiple-entry, and transit visas. The type of visa you need will depend on the purpose of your visit and how long you plan to stay.
To apply for a visa, you will need to complete an online application form and submit it along with a scanned copy of your passport and a passport-sized photo. You will also need to pay a fee, which varies depending on the type of visa you are applying for.
It is important to apply for your visa well in advance of your travel dates, as processing times can vary. You should also make sure that you have all the required documents and information before you begin the application process.
In addition to a valid passport and visa, there are a few other requirements that you should be aware of before you travel to Kenya. For example, all visitors are required to have a yellow fever vaccination certificate if they are arriving from a country with a risk of yellow fever transmission.
It is also a good idea to carry a copy of your passport and other important documents with you at all times while traveling in Kenya. This can help you avoid any issues if your passport is lost or stolen.
Health and Safety Requirements
When traveling to Kenya, it is important to ensure that you are up-to-date with all the necessary health and safety requirements. This section covers the key requirements you should be aware of before you travel.
Vaccinations and Health Certificates
Before traveling to Kenya, you should ensure that you have received all the necessary vaccinations. The following vaccinations are recommended for travelers to Kenya:
- Yellow fever
- Hepatitis A and B
It is recommended that you get vaccinated at least 4-6 weeks before your departure date to allow the vaccines to take effect. You may also be required to show proof of vaccination upon entry into Kenya.
In addition to vaccinations, you may also be required to obtain a health certificate. The health certificate should indicate that you have been vaccinated against yellow fever and other diseases as required by the Kenyan government.
It is highly recommended that you purchase travel insurance before traveling to Kenya. This will provide you with coverage for any unexpected medical expenses, trip cancellations, or other unforeseen events that may occur during your trip.
When selecting a travel insurance policy, make sure that it covers medical expenses, emergency medical evacuation, trip cancellation, and trip interruption. You should also ensure that the policy provides coverage for adventure activities such as safari tours.
When traveling to Kenya, it is important to take certain safety precautions to ensure your well-being. Here are some tips to keep in mind:
- Avoid walking alone at night, especially in urban areas.
- Keep your valuables in a safe place and avoid carrying large amounts of cash.
- Be cautious when using public transportation, especially matatus (minibusses).
- Always be aware of your surroundings and stay alert to any potential threats.
In addition to these precautions, it is recommended that you stay up-to-date with the latest travel advisories from the US Department of State and the Kenyan government. This will help you stay informed about any potential security risks or other issues that may arise during your trip.
Currency and Financial Requirements
When traveling to Kenya, it is important to have a good understanding of the local currency and financial requirements to ensure a smooth trip. In this section, we will cover the basics of currency exchange and budgeting for travel expenses.
The official currency of Kenya is the Kenyan shilling (KES). It is recommended that you exchange your currency at a bank or authorized exchange bureau upon arrival. Avoid exchanging money on the street, as it is illegal and may result in receiving counterfeit bills.
It is also important to note that many businesses in Kenya only accept cash. Credit cards are accepted in larger cities and tourist areas, but it is always a good idea to have cash on hand.
Budgeting for Travel Expenses
When planning your trip to Kenya, it is important to budget for all potential expenses. Here are some common expenses to consider:
- Accommodation: Prices vary depending on location and level of luxury. Budget options can be found for around 1000 KES per night, while luxury options can cost upwards of 20,000 KES per night.
- Food: Street food and local restaurants are generally inexpensive, with meals costing around 500 KES. Western-style restaurants and high-end dining can be much more expensive.
- Transportation: Taxis and public transportation are available, with prices varying depending on distance and mode of transportation. It is recommended to negotiate prices before getting in a taxi.
- Activities: Safaris and other tourist activities can be quite expensive, with prices ranging from 5000 KES to 50,000 KES or more.
It is also important to factor in unexpected expenses, such as medical emergencies and unexpected transportation costs. It is recommended to budget at least 10,000 KES per day for a comfortable trip to Kenya.
When traveling to Kenya, you need to ensure that you have met the transportation requirements. This section will provide you with the information you need to know to make sure your travel to Kenya goes smoothly.
If you plan to travel to Kenya by air, you need to have a valid passport and a visa. You must also book your flight with an airline that has been approved by the Kenyan government. You can check the list of approved airlines on the Kenya Civil Aviation Authority website.
Before boarding your flight, you will need to complete a passenger locator form on the ‘jitenge’ platform. This form will help the Kenyan government track and trace any potential COVID-19 cases.
Once you arrive in Kenya, you will need to arrange for ground transportation to your final destination. You can choose from several options, including taxis, car rentals, and public transportation.
If you plan to use a taxi, make sure that you use a licensed taxi service. You can ask your hotel or airport information desk for recommendations. Be sure to negotiate the fare before getting into the taxi.
If you prefer to rent a car, you will need to have a valid driver’s license from your home country. You can rent a car from several international car rental companies, including Avis, Hertz, and Europcar.
If you plan to use public transportation, be aware that it can be crowded and uncomfortable. The most common form of public transportation in Kenya is the matatu, which is a minibus that operates on fixed routes. Be sure to check the route and fare before boarding the matatu.
When planning a trip to Kenya, it is important to consider your accommodation options. There are various types of accommodations available, ranging from hotels and lodges to campsites and homestays. In this section, we will discuss the types of accommodations available and the booking and reservation procedures.
Types of Accommodations
Hotels and lodges are the most popular types of accommodations in Kenya. They range from budget to luxury, and most offer amenities such as restaurants, swimming pools, and Wi-Fi. Campsites are also available for those who prefer a more rustic experience. These campsites are usually located in national parks and game reserves, and they offer basic facilities such as toilets and showers.
Homestays are another option for travelers who want to experience Kenyan culture and hospitality. This type of accommodation involves staying with a local family in their home. It is a great way to learn about the local customs and way of life.
Booking and Reservation Procedures
To book a hotel or lodge, you can use online booking platforms such as Booking.com or Expedia. You can also contact the hotel or lodge directly via email or phone. It is important to book in advance, especially during peak travel seasons, to ensure availability.
For campsites, you can book directly with the Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) or through a tour operator. It is important to note that campsites in national parks and game reserves are in high demand, so it is best to book well in advance.
Homestays can be arranged through local tour operators or through websites such as Homestay.com. It is important to communicate your needs and expectations with the host family before making a reservation.