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International travel

International Travel to/from Kenya

Kenya airwaysThe national airline in Kenya is Kenya airways, but other major airlines also operate out of the three international airports at Nairobi, Mombasa and Eldoret. British Airways flies nonstop from London to Nairobi, Swiss Air offers services from Zurich to Nairobi, and Emirates offer connection flights to Kenya from Europe through its middle eastern hubs.

There are also several major bus routes to Kenya, the main connections to Nairobi being from Dar es Salaam, Arusha and Moshi, and to Mombasa from Dar es Salaam only. Getting through should be relatively easy, though you may want to arrange your visa in advance to save time (for yourself and your fellow passengers!). There are also ferries to Mombasa from Zanzibar and Dar es Salaam.

If driving into Kenya in your own vehicle, bear in mind first of all that you will need registration papers for the vehicle, liability insurance and an international driving permit – all in addition to your domestic license. If approaching Kenya from the north, the only viable route at this time is through Ethiopia – though the border post of Moyale can be dangerous due to an increase in civil fighting. Crossing through Somalia and Sudan is unfortunately not safe at this time.

From the south, there are four main posts at the border between Kenya and Tanzania – Namanga, Taveta, Isebania and Lunga Lunga.

International Travel to/from Tanzania

Precision airThe major airlines travelling into Tanzania from Europe are British Airways (London Heathrow – Dar Es Salaam), Virgin Express (London Heathrow to Kilimanjaro), KLM (Amsterdam – Kilimanjaro), Turkish Airlines (Istanbul – Dar Es Salaam) and Swiss (Zurich – Dar Es Salaam). From Asia, passengers will usually connect in Singapore, the United Arab Emirates or India. Alternatively, from Hong Kong, Guangzhou and Bangkok passengers can connect in Nairobi with Kenya Airways.

There are many African airlines offering flights to either Dar or Kilimanjaro, for example Ethiopian Airlines (from Addis Ababa), Kenya Airways (from Nairobi), Zambian Airways (from Lusaka), or SAA (from Johannesburg). Passengers travelling from the United States will have to take a connection in one of the above mentioned European or African hubs, whilst passengers from Australia or New Zealand will have to connect in an Asian hub.

CoachIt is also possible to enter Tanzania internationally by coach, from Kenya, Malawi, Uganda and Zambia. It is usually hassle free, though can be rather slow, and you will need to disembark at border posts for visa formalities (visa fees are not included in the price of the tickets). It’s worth taking a pen with you for filling out forms, as pens can be few and far between at busy border posts!

Between Kenya and Tanzania, the main crossing is the Nmanga border post, used for the route between Nairobi and Arusha. It’s also possible to take a bus between Tanga and Mombasa. For Malawi, the only crossing is at Songwe River Bridge, and buses go several times a week from Lilongwe to Dar, though they can be very long, very crowded and very delayed. The main crossing between Tanzania and Zambia is at Tunduma.

If travelling by car or motorcycle, you will need the vehicle’s registration papers, your driving license, a temporary import permit and third-party insurance. You will also have to pay a one-time fuel levy.

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