A passport and visa are required for entry into Kenya. Nationals (Passport holders) of the following countries do not require visas to enter Kenya click for details. Good news for North America citizens, The Kenya Consulate wishes to inform all visa applicants of the introduction of a new electronic visa processing system (evisa http://evisa.go.ke/evisa.html ). This online visa application process is currently running concurrently with the Kenya Consulate offices but visas are also available at ports of entry upon arrival.
Types of visa
· Single Entry: which allows guests to enter into Kenya once, However kindly note, a single entry Visa would allow re-entry to Kenya from any of the following East African Countries (Uganda, Tanzania and Rwanda)
· East Africa Visa – allows travel between Kenya, Rwanda and Uganda with the same multiple entry visas. The holder of the East Africa Tourist Visa shall enter the region from the country that issued the visa and move within the two other countries without applying for another visa or paying another visa fee.
A single entry visa costs $50 and $100 for multiple entry visas for each applicant regardless of age, and whether obtained in advance or at the airport.
EXEMPTION OF VISA FEES FOR CHILDREN UNDER 16 YEARS – Effective 1st February 2016, children under 16 years of age accompanying their parents to Kenya will be exempted from paying visa fees.
NB: Please note that the possession of a Kenyan Visa is not the final authority to enter Kenya. The immigration officer at the port of entry may deny entry if the visitor is unable to fulfill the immigration requirements and if the entry and presence of such a person in Kenya would be contrary to national interests, even if such a person is in possession of a valid visa for Kenya. Since visa requirements may change, it is advisable for visitors to check the current requirements through Kenya Tourist Offices, Kenyan Embassies or High Commissions in their countries before travelling to avoid embarrassment.
Kenya enjoys a tropical climate. It is hot and humid at the coast, temperate inland and very dry in the north and northeast parts of the country.
The average annual temperature for the coastal town of Mombasa (altitude 17 meters’) is 30.30 Celsius maximum and 22.40 Celsius minimum, the capital city, Nairobi (altitude 1,661 metres) 25.20 Celsius maximum and 13.60 Celsius minimum, Eldoret (altitude 3,085) 23.60 Celsius maximum and 9.50 Celsius minimum, Lodwar (altitude) 506 metres) and the drier north plainlands 34.80 Celsius maximum and 23.70 Celsius minimum.
There is plenty of sunshine all the year round and summer clothes are worn throughout the year. However, it is usually cool at night and early in the morning.
The long rains occur from April to June and short rains from October to December. The rainfall is sometimes heavy and when it comes it often falls in the afternoons and evenings. The hottest period is from February to March and coldest in July to August.
The annual migration of wildlife between Serengeti National Park in Tanzania and Maasai Mara National Park in Kenya takes place between June and September. The migration of almost two million wildebeest, zebras and other species is nature’s greatest spectacle on earth. The animal trek has been captured by filmmakers worldwide.
Normal precautions as in any other destination world-wide should be taken. Visitors are advised not to leave cash and valuables in their hotel rooms but to make use of safe deposit boxes and safes. One should never carry large sums in cash and women should keep a tight grip on handbags in crowds or busy streets.
Jewelry snatching is quite common in city streets. Like in all major cities, walking alone or in small groups at night is risky and should be avoided. Reliable taxis are available at all the principal hotels. Taking photographs at airports, near military installations, of policeman, the president, the national flag, the State House, state lodges, soldiers, prisons and prisoners etc., is prohibited. Before photographing local people, permission should be obtained and a fixed price agreed. Seek the assistance of your driver/guide in this matter.
Both mains electricity and generated supply in lodges provide 240 volts AC 50 cycles. Most large hotels and some game lodges provide shaving points with 110v 50 cycles. Sockets are normally three pin and of the ‘square’ variety.
TIPPING AND PORTERAGE
Although hotels and lodges include a service charge, it is customary to tip porters, waiters, taxi drivers and safari drivers/guides.
Kiswahili is the lingua franca while English is the official language. In addition, most tribes have their own language.
Kenya requires all visitors to present proof of yellow fever vaccination. Your doctor will provide the necessary documentation and may also recommend vaccines or medications for addressing these common health concerns.
· Hepatitis A
If you currently take any prescription medications, let your doctor know how long you plan on being out of the country. He can make sure you have an adequate supply to cover your needs until your return home.
Along with your passport and visa, keep all health records and vaccination documentation at the ready as you travel. Be sure to carry the following:
· Your health insurance card and/or proof of supplemental travel health insurance
· Copies of all prescriptions for medications you bring with you
· Copies of prescriptions for eye glasses or other medical supplies
· A list of names and numbers for emergency contacts back home
It is advisable to assemble a compact first-aid kit that includes these personal items.
· Bandages and blister pads
· Aspirins, antihistamines and anti-malarial pills
· An antibiotic cream and a cortisone cream
For personal comfort, you might also want to bring eye drops and non-fragrant hand lotion as well as non-fragrant sun block and lip balm.
Drinking water from the tap is considered risky. Hotels and lodges usually furnish safe bottled water in the guests rooms. Safe water can also be obtained from supermarkets.
When you travel with Donwel Tours & Safaris, you’re assured of emergency care through our partnership with the internationally accredited AMREF Flying Doctors. This professional organization has provided health services in all types of settings across Africa for more than 60 years. The globally recognized air ambulance server provides emergency health care and transportation to the nearest medical facilities.
Flying Doctors are on call and available 24/7 to handle any kind of medical emergency provided that you are enrolled on membership during your travel.
Most of the banks have ATM’s which accept Visa and Master cards for cash. These banks are found within major towns and cities,
Many banks now offer extended banking hours (8am to 8pm, Monday to Friday and 8am to 4pm on Saturday, they include Barclays, Standard Chartered, Diamond Trust, NIC, Bank of Africa, African Banking Corporation and NIC now operate from between 7am and 8pm.
Most hotels, lodges, camps, shopping malls will accept credit cards. Visa is much more widely accepted than other cards. Banks will advance local currency against your credit card if need be.
You can exchange any foreign currency at any authorized banks and bureau de change. There are many bureaus in East Africa, Just enquire from your guide for any assistance. However we do recommend you stick to your US dollars, they are universally accepted in all the destinations you will be visiting.
Currency Import regulations:
Residents may import up to KES 500,000.- (Kenya Shilling-KES) to cover expenses upon re-entry into Kenya. No restrictions apply to foreign currencies. Non-residents may import local and foreign currency without restrictions. However, for amounts equivalent to USD 5,000.- and more residents and non-residents need to hold documents indicating the source and the purpose of this amount.
The basic unit of currency in Kenya is the Shilling (KES). There are 100 cents in one Kenyan Shilling. Bills come in denominations of 1,000, 500, 200, 100 and 50 Shillings.
US bank notes with series date before the year 2006 will be declined in East Africa, Kindly make sure all your dollars bills that you bring along with you are post year 2006.
ITEMS TO PACK FOR YOUR SAFARI
- Bright summer clothes for safari tour ;Laundry is cheap and available, so do not pack much in terms of clothes
- Fuller clothes for evenings at the hotel and lodge, such as long pants and long-sleeved shirts to protect you against mosquitoes after sunset and, if necessary, against the sun
- A jacket/sweater, as it can be cool in the early morning and evening
- Summer Footwear (e.g. sports shoes and cotton socks). Avoid walking on bare feet and or leaving your legs naked at night due to mosquitoes
- Power adapter with 3 pins – this enables a shaver, trimmer, electric toothbrush and any batteries to be charged via a single adapter
- Small flashlight and extra batteries
- Hat that shields against the sun
- Sunscreen, sunglasses and lip balm
- A mosquito/insect repellent jelly
- Nail clippers and file
- Personal medicine and toiletries
- Extra batteries for camera, recorder
CONTENT RECOMMENDED IN YOUR HAND LUGGAGE
- Passports, money, tickets
- Medication you use at home (always in your hand luggage, just in case you lose your suitcase!)
- Hand Medicine: analgesic, allergy pills, remedy for diarrhea (maybe Imodium), malaria pills, plasters and disinfectant wipes
- Binoculars (so you get to see the leopard way out there in the tree!)
- Camera and memory cards more than you expect to use, including battery charger and a bag to protect the camera from Africa’s fine, red dust
- Shoulder bag with sturdy strap and zip. A money belt or good inside pockets that can be zipped up
- A few photocopies of all personal documents such as passports, visas, flights, travel insurance, vaccination card, international debit cards, (Master Card, Visa credit cards etc.) driving license
- Telephone list for immediate blocking of lost debit card and insurance
- Notebook and pens