Kenya was one of the first countries to welcome both vaccinated travellers and not-fully-vaccinated travellers with proof of testing again. Since 9 May 2023, proof of vaccination or testing is no longer required for a trip to Kenya. However, the visa requirement for Kenya still applies.
No Covid-19 measures for travel to Kenya
Since 9 May 2023, there have been no Covid-19 related measures for international travel to Kenya. It therefore does not matter whether you are vaccinated against Covid-19; upon arrival, you no longer have to show proof of vaccination or testing. However, travellers still have to meet the visa requirement. This means that everyone who travels to Kenya for a holiday, a visit to family or friends, or a business trip, needs a visa.
As such, there are no Covid-19 related measures in place that you need to take into account before your departure to Kenya. However, there is a Covid-19 related measure in place that you need to take into account upon arrival. Travellers who, upon arrival in Kenya, show flu-like symptoms have to complete a passenger locator form and take a Covid-19 test.
Kenya one of the first countries to reopen borders
In early 2020, the whole world went into lockdown because of the impending Covid-19 pandemic, rendering it impossible to travel internationally. Kenya closed its borders as well. This border closure did not take long, because on 1 August 2020, the country decided to open its borders to all travellers. Like many African countries, Kenya reopened its borders for economic reasons. Logically, the border closure had a large impact on the tourism sector, one of the country's most important income sources. However, reopening the borders did not have the desired effect. In 2020 and 2021, the number of visitors to Kenya was lower than a million, whereas in the previous years, over 2 million visitors travelled to the country.
Stimulating the tourism sector
To help the tourism sector even more, Kenya decided relatively early to allow entry to unvaccinated travellers. On 18 March 2022, vaccinated travellers to Kenya only required a visa and proof of vaccination. From that date, unvaccinated travellers were also allowed to enter the country, but they did require taking a Covid-19 test before departure. If the result was negative, there was no quarantine requirement for their visit to the country. For this group, having a Kenya visa was also required. Kenya allowed entry to unvaccinated travellers much earlier than other countries. The USA, for example, did not allow entry to unvaccinated travellers until 12 May 2023.
Only the visa is still required
Since 9 May 2023, travelling to Kenya no longer requires proof of vaccination or testing. However, travellers do need to have a valid visa. To apply for the required visa, they have to meet all visa requirements. Only then are they allowed to enter the country. For example, your passport needs to be valid for at least six more months upon arrival in Kenya and you have to take a booking confirmation for your first accommodation address. Keep in mind that you can only enter the country at a number of set arrival locations. If you meet all the requirements, you can easily apply for the Kenya visa online.