Kenya, a popular tourist destination in East Africa, has recently announced a new visa waiver policy for vaccinated tourists. This policy aims to attract more tourists to Kenya and help revive the country's tourism industry, which has been hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic.
In this blog, we'll explore the details of this new policy and its implications for tourists.
Under the new policy, tourists who have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 will be allowed to enter Kenya without a visa. This applies to all nationalities and is expected to come into effect on 1st June 2021. However, tourists will still need to provide a negative COVID-19 test result taken within 96 hours of travel.
Tourism is a significant contributor to Kenya's econoPopular Tourist Destinations in Kenyamy, accounting for approximately 10% of the country's GDP. The COVID-19 pandemic has had a severe impact on the industry, with the number of tourist arrivals dropping by over 70% in 2020. The new visa waiver policy is expected to help revive the industry and attract more tourists to the country.
Kenya has recorded over 160,000 COVID-19 cases since the start of the pandemic, with over 2,700 deaths. However, the country has been ramping up its vaccination campaign, with over 800,000 doses administered so far. The government is confident that the vaccine rollout, along with strict adherence to COVID-19 protocols, will help ensure the safety of tourists visiting the country.
Tourists who are not vaccinated against COVID-19 can also get vaccinated in Kenya. The government has prioritized the vaccination of tourism sector workers, and tourists can also receive the vaccine at designated centers across the country.
Apart from the negative COVID-19 test result, tourists entering Kenya will also need to complete a health surveillance form and undergo a health screening upon arrival. They will also need to comply with all COVID-19 protocols, including wearing masks and practicing social distancing.
Kenya is known for its stunning natural beauty and diverse wildlife. Some of the most popular tourist destinations in the country include the Maasai Mara National Reserve, the Amboseli National Park, and the Tsavo National Park.
The country also has a rich cultural heritage, with numerous historical sites and museums.
Apart from the vaccination campaign and the new visa waiver policy, the Kenyan government has implemented various other measures to curb the spread of COVID-19. These include restrictions on large gatherings, mandatory mask-wearing in public places, and a curfew from 10 pm to 4 am.
The COVID-19 pandemic has had a profound impact on the tourism industry worldwide, and many countries are now looking for ways to revive it safely. The new visa waiver policy in Kenya is just one example of such efforts.
It remains to be seen how the industry will evolve in a post-COVID world, but one thing is certain – tourists will always be eager to explore new destinations and have unique experiences.
The new visa waiver policy is a step in the right direction for Kenya's tourism industry, but there is still a long way to go. The government will need to continue investing in infrastructure and marketing efforts to attract more tourists to the country. However, with its natural beauty, rich culture, and friendly people, Kenya has all the ingredients to become a top tourist destination in the region.