|Posted on January 19, 2011 at 9:12 AM|
At the Airport:
From January 2011 a single tourist visa to Kenya will cost $50, £30 or €40 per person for a maximum of 90 days stay; children below 16 years are free of charge.
Tourist visa can be obtained on arrival at Moi International Airport in Mombasa or Jomo Kenyatta International airport in Nairobi.
Note that the least accepted bank note at immigration is $5, dollar bank notes should be 2000-series or younger and that all bank notes should be undamaged.
It is advisable to bring exact money to pay for visa.
Visa can be extended for another 90 days at the Immigration Office in Mombasa once, for an additional Ksh 3200, and two recent pass photos. The maximum duration to stay on tourist visa in Kenya is 180 days.
Kenyan Shilling, also Kes / Ksh or ‘Bob’ are in coins of 1, 5, 10, and 20 Shilling. Notes are in 50, 100, 200, 500 and 1000 Ksh. Check the current official exchange rate and note that it is un-commissioned, flat rate.
For daily expenses you’ll need Kenyan Shilling. You should avoid changing money in your hotel or safari lodge as their rates will be poor. Most profitable is to change your Stirling Pounds, Euro, U.S. Dollars, Swiss Franc or ZAR at local FX or a bank. Just outside Moi Airport are Barclays ATMs and a FX. You will get better exchange rates at Shaaban Mini-market, next to Cheers bar at Bamburi Beach.
When coming from the airport, the first ATMs on North Coast are Nakumatt Shopping Centre in Nyali with Barclays, Kenya Commercial Bank, and Stanbic Standard Bank ATMs. In Bamburi are two ATMs at Barclays Branch and in Mtwapa is a Kenya Commercial Bank ATM at Post Office, a Barclays Bank ATM along the Mombasa - Malindi Road, than at Kenol filling station and a Cooperative Bank of Kenya ATM on the northern edge of Mtwapa.
Hotels and Restaurants:
Park Entrance Fees, Lodges, safaris and some hotels are best to be paid in U.S. Dollar. Restaurants, local hotels and apartments can be paid in Ksh, unless advised otherwise. Tips for staffs in coins are not useful. You may be asked to change coins to Shilling, it is not to con you, it is because these coins are useless for the receiver.
Before you travel to Kenya:
Inquire for anti malaria medication and required/advised vaccinations.
Inquire at your bank to assure your debit/credit card will function in Kenya.
Change an amount into Kenyan Shilling on arrival for the first day(s).
Do not depend on ATM operations till the last day, due to power cuts or empty ATM machines you’ll avoid embarrassment.
Do use hotel saves for and do not leave your valuables unattended in a hotel room.
A change in climate and dishes may give stomach upset, bring or obtain medication to avoid dehydration.
Try to avoid alcohol and coffee on the first days, and drink enough bottled water. This will help to avoid dehydration.
Avoid ice-cubes in drinks.
Avoid salads washed with dirty water.
For UK-travellers using Thomson / First Choice a departure tax of $20 is applicable, which can be paid in Kenyan Shilling too.
Duty free shopping at the airport is most profitable in U.S. Dollar. Kenyan Shillings will attract an unprofitable exchange rate when purchasing duty free items.
Do not take any plants, shells, coral, animals or animal product such as ivory and tortoise shells back to you home country.
This attracts big punishments and stimulates criminal behaviour at cost of our beautiful Kenyan environment and Marine Parks.
Have a great time in Mtwapa, the best place in Kenya !