The Kenyan government will be changing its immigration laws in ways that will make it less complicated to travel to Kenya with children. Currently, travellers are still denied entry to the country if they cannot present the necessary paperwork to prove their children have been granted permission to enter.
Instead, the government of Kenya will be asking travellers with underage children for permission from both parents. This was revealed by the Home Office minister, Malusi Gigaba.
Kenya visa requirements set to change
The Kenyan Government is set to change the requirements of the Kenya visa for minors. This should make it easier to travel with underage children. The proposal was made late October by the Home Office minister.
The current requirements of the Kenya visa have a negative effect on tourism in the country. The state has therefore decided to take measures to make it more attractive for tourist to travel to Kenya. Kenya’s economy is very dependent on tourism.
Easier to travel to Kenya for foreign travellers with children
It will become far easier for foreign travellers to travel to Kenya with children. Currently, each child must possess their own passport and Kenya visa. In the future, these children now only need permission from both parents to travel. However, the government of Kenya still recommends children carry their paperwork with them.
On arrival in Kenya, children will no longer be asked for their paperwork. This means that in theory, adults travelling with children need to only present their own visa and passport, and prove that the children belong to them.
It might still be wise to travel with a Kenya visa as a minor. Although the requirements might be loosened, immigration officers might still ask for documentation from minors. This can for example happen in cases the immigration service deems suspicious, to avoid child kidnappings.
Underage travellers no longer refused
Underage travellers with a Kenya visa will no longer be rejected right away if their paperwork does not appear to be in order. Instead, the government will look if they have parental permission to travel. If this proof can be provided, they can enter the country as normal. However, the government of Kenya still advises minors to keep their documentation at hand, just to be sure.
It is expected that this new rule will go into effect in the near future. The intent is for it to go into effect before the ‘party season'. The government is aiming to arrange all this before Christmas.
Kenya visa application
Travellers that want to go to Kenya in 2020 need a visa to do so. it is important to apply for the visa before departure. The visa meant for tourist travel purposes can be applied for through this website. It is no longer necessary to visit the Kenyan embassy.
Apply for Kenya visa
The Kenya visa is a digital travel authorisation. This is why it is also known as the Kenya e-visa. Through the e-visa, the government of Kenya grants the traveller permission to travel to Kenya. This travel permit is mandatory for everyone. If you don’t have a Kenya visa, you will be refused at the border.
The visa is meant for tourist trips. The option also exists to apply for a visa for business trips. Regardless of the visa type chosen, you are not allowed to work for a Kenyan employer. You can stay for 90 days on the Kenya visa.
To apply for the visa, all travellers must have their own passports. The passport must also be valid for at least six more months. With the Kenya visa, you can only arrive at a select few locations. A booking confirmation of the return flight must also be presented. Alternatively, you can also provide the address of your overnight stay or a letter of invitation from an inhabitant of Kenya.
While all tourist and business travellers need a visa, unlike other countries, you don’t need a visa for transfers or transits in Kenya. Applying for the Kenya visa costs € 74,95 per person. After payment you will be asked to scan your passport. The visa will then be granted within a few days.
Travelling with children: Kenya visa necessary?
It takes on average a week for the Kenya visa to be delivered. With urgent application, the delivery time is on average two workdays. Children under 16 years of age do need their own passport, but not a visa. All travellers above this age need to have both of these documents.
Furthermore, it is important to know that whenever you are travelling with children, you need the permission of both parents. This permission slip will be asked for at the airport. Airports have strict rules in place for this, to counter child kidnappings.