Getting into Kenya is generally as straightforward as visiting most western airports, provided you’ve got the right documents and visas or you’ve got the cash to pay for them on arrival. Most nationals, including British travellers, will need a visa to enter Kenya or the countries that surround it, and there are several health and safety regulations to consider. Feeling overwhelmed? Don’t worry, we’ve done all the homework for you… Read on for information on health and safety as well as the passport details required for your visit to Kenya…
Health & safety
As Kenya is prone to malaria, make sure you take all the necessary precautions before leaving home. Visit your doctor at least a month before your departure to discuss the right malaria prophylactic for you. The most common pills include mefloquine (sold as Lariam) that’s taken weekly, the antibiotic doxycycline that’s taken daily, and atovaquone-with-proguanil that’s also taken daily (sold as Malarone). Your doctor will be able to advise further on which of these pills is best for you, and what the various side effects can be.
Prevention is always best. Make sure you are protected against mosquitoes by covering your arms, legs and feet as much as possible in the evenings. As it’s believed that mosquitoes are naturally attracted to dark colours, pack plenty of light coloured trousers and long-sleeve shirts to wear after dark. Most lodges will have mosquito nets above the beds but it’s also worthwhile investing in a good quality mosquito repellent with DEET.
Sunshine & hydration
Pack high SPF sunscreen and a good pair of sunglasses to protect your eyes from the bright glare of the equatorial sun. Beware of dehydration by making sure you’re drinking plenty of fluids. If you have a weak stomach, it’s advisable to stick to bottled water which is widely available and is often provided free of charge at your lodge.
Kenya is a yellow-fever zone and you’ll need to show your yellow fever vaccination card when you leave Kenya. An International Vaccination Certificate (IVC) only becomes valid ten days after you’ve had the vaccination, after which it is valid for ten years so make sure you allow enough time for this to be done. You should also make sure you are up to date with your childhood tetanus and polio shots: you will need a booster shot every ten years.
Ensure your passport is valid for at least six months after you get home from holiday and make sure that it has at least two blank pages in it.
British travellers will need a visa to visit Kenya. This can be obtained on arrival at the airport (cash only). To save time, we’d recommend downloading the application form, and have it filled in ready for your arrival or you can even get your visas online in advance from the Kenyan embassy or high commission – in person or by post. We’d recommend checking with the Kenyan embassy website to get the most up-to-date information.
Soft luggage bags are essential
Planning on flying in and around Kenya on smaller airlines? It’s important to note that most internal airlines do not allow hard case luggage on-board – they only allow soft bags up to a maximum of 15kg per person. So bringing a soft case bag along with you for your domestic journey is essential.
The Kenyan Embassy in London
45 Portland Place, London W1B 4AS | 020 7636 2371 | kenyahighcom.org.uk
We’d recommend taking out a good travel insurance policy before travelling to Kenya. A typical insurance policy usually provides cover for loss of baggage, tickets and cash up to a certain amount, as well as cancellation or curtailment of your journey. Planning to enjoy adventure sports? Check that your insurance plan covers diving, climbing, watersports etc.
Find out more
- Kenya: An Introduction
- Culture & Coast
- Wildlife & National Parks
- When to Travel
- What to Do
- Where to Stay