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Kenya Travel Tips

Entry Requirements:

Canadian and US citizens are required to have a passport that is valid for at least 6 months after their intended return date, as well as a tourist visa. Visa can be acquired before arrival or on arrival at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport. Visa cost US$50 per person.


June - August
SUMMER: September - March
Kenya’s geographical diversity means its climate varies from the hot humidity of the coast to the cool, sometimes frosty, morning of the central highland country and burning heat of the Northern desert.Overall it is seldom harsh, being neither too hot not too cold. Rainy seasons are late March to May (the “long” rains) and late October to November (the “short” rains). During these times downpours occur mostly in the late afternoons; the days start out warm and sunny. Traveling in Kenya at this time is not generally a problem as the roads are good and the bursts of rain are short.


The currency of Kenya is the Kenyan Shilling. There are about 69 Kenya shillings to one US dollar (at time of printing). Most hotels and lodges will accept either US dollars or Kenya Shillings as payment. Bring US dollars in cash and travellers cheques.

Credit Cards:

Visa and Mastercard are generally accepted throughout Kenya. Some banks in Kenya will issue cash against a Visa or Mastercard.


Packing space is limited on all modes of transport but
particularly on small domestic aircraft. Luggage must be restricted to 12kg (26lbs) in soft bags plus a reasonable amount of hand luggage.

Time Difference:

EST plus 7 (Summer)
EST plus 8 (Winter)


Although tap water in Kenya is safe to drink, we do recommend that you purchase and drink bottled water. Many lodges and camps will provide bottled water for you to drink. Shades of Africa Tours and Safaris will provide free bottled mineral water while in safari Minibus.


220/240 volts AC. Outlets are of the 3 pin, 13-amp type. Please be aware that in some tented accommodations you may not find a plug socket.

Health Requirements:

It is imperative that you obtain Anti-Malaria medication before entering Kenya. Other precautionary measures are: keep flaps of your tent zipped at all times; spray your accommodation with insecticide; make use of a mosquito repellent lotion; wear long-sleeved clothing, trousers and socks when outside at night.
Anyone who has any special medication should take enough supplies to last their visit.
Adequate medical services are available in Nairobi and Mombasa. Doctors and hospitals expect immediate cash payment for health services. We therefore recommend that travel insurance should also include medical cover. Flying doctor services are available and to become a member for the period of your safari it will cost you US$30. One can subscribe on arrival in Kenya.

Air Tickets:

All flights should be reconfirmed at least 48 hours prior to departure of your flight. Normally your guide or the concierge at hotels and lodges are able to assist you.


Most hotels include a 10% service charge on the bill. If the service charge has not been included 10% tip is usual, although the amount is entirely at the visitor's discretion. On safari you should tip your driver and guide. These people do not earn very much so you should tip as much as you feel you can, about USD 5.00 per person, per day is about right, but of course this depends on you and how happy you were with your service.

Communication and Important Telephone Numbers:


The international dialling code for calling Kenya
is +254. International direct dialling is available at most hotels but remember that hotels levy a substantial surcharge on all calls. Public phones work with coins or with telephone cards (which can be purchased at post offices or from international call services in major towns.) Most game lodges will have a central phone at reception but not individual phones in the rooms. If you require special assistance you may call our local office, numbers will be provided within your document.


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