Kenya COVID entry rules

By Sarnia Guiton
This item appears on page 11 of the March 2021 issue.

On Nov. 21, 2020, moving to my new home, I flew from Vancouver, BC, Canada, to Nairobi, Kenya, on Lufthansa.

While I knew of Kenya’s Ministry of Transport’s directive that proof of a negative result of a PCR-based COVID-19 test, taken within 96 hours of arrival, had to be presented for entry into that country, what I wasn’t aware of was that it had to be presented at check-in at the airport before leaving Canada.

I was fortunate that my test result had arrived by text on my phone that morning. Some people were unable to fly because they had not known of the boarding requirement.

Kenya’s Ministry of Transport stated that incoming travelers from some countries, including the US, would need to quarantine for 14 days even with a negative COVID-19 test result. I was fortunate in that people traveling from Canada were exempt from that requirement.

Lufthansa gave out health forms on the flight from Frankfurt to Nairobi, but in Nairobi, the paper forms weren’t accepted. Arriving passengers had to fill them out and submit them online to produce the necessary code used for entry. I don’t know how anyone who did not have a smartphone managed to complete the form properly.

In regard to COVID-19, the description of Kenya’s entry requirements on the Ministry of Transport’s website and on at least two travel companies’ websites and from Lufthansa all said different things, causing a lot of confusion.

On the one hand, the above information might be useful for those interested in traveling to Kenya. On the other hand, the rules will probably have changed three times by the time this letter is printed.

Nairobi, Kenya