Kenya has ceased issuing visas on arrival, both at its borders and in Kenyan embassies, since the close of 2020. As part of its modernization efforts, the government has introduced online Kenya tourist visas
to streamline the application process.
Additionally, the government is implementing Airport Biometrics technology to enhance security at airports and other key public locations in Kenya.
For US citizens planning a trip to Kenya, it's crucial to understand the available visa options, especially considering the discontinuation of visas on arrival for US travellers in Kenya. Below, we provide detailed information on the various visa alternatives:
The Kenya E Visa is a digital authorization system specifically tailored for international tourists seeking to explore Kenya. This online visa grants permission for a single entry into the country and is applicable to travellers from nations that require a visa, regardless of their purpose of visit—whether it be for business, leisure, medical treatment, or other objectives.
Ideal for frequent visitors to Kenya, the Kenya multiple-entry eVisa offers a convenient solution. It allows travellers to enter and exit Kenya multiple times without the hassle of applying for a new visa on each occasion. This option is particularly advantageous for individuals who frequently visit Kenya, whether for work or leisure purposes.
Designed for travellers in transit through Kenya with a short stay, typically lasting up to 72 hours, the Kenya Transit Visa serves a specific purpose. If your itinerary involves leaving the airport during a layover in Kenya, this visa is a necessity. However, if you intend to remain within the airport's confines during your transit, a Transit Visa is not required.
The 5-year Multiple Entry Visa for Kenya caters to individuals who regularly travel to Kenya for diverse reasons, including business or tourism. This long-term visa allows multiple entries into Kenya over a five-year span, eliminating the need to repeatedly apply for a visa for each visit. Typically, each stay is limited to 90 days or as stipulated in the visa conditions.
If you're a US citizen planning a trip to Kenya, it's crucial to choose the right visa option, especially since Kenya no longer offers visas on arrival for US travellers. If your purpose for visiting Kenya is tourism, we highly recommend applying for the Kenya Evisa.
Required Documents for a Kenya eVisa
To successfully apply for a Kenya Evisa, you must prepare the following essential documents:
While there are various methods to apply for a Kenyan visa, we strongly recommend using the streamlined process offered by the online platform for your Kenya E-visa application. Choosing the Kenya Evisa route simplifies the visa application process and enhances your overall travel experience.
Steps to Apply Online
Getting started with the online app is straightforward and user-friendly. Follow these steps to apply for your Kenya visa:
Upon confirming your payment, the app will review your Kenya visa application and forward it to official agencies for further processing.
Check Your Visa Status
After submitting your Kenya visa application through the online platform, you can monitor its progress using the app with these steps:
Once your visa is approved, the app will send you an electronic version via email, and a copy will be accessible under the "My Documents" tab in the app.
For US citizens seeking to apply for a Kenya visa through official government channels, here are the essential document requirements:
- Must be valid for at least six months from your planned entry date into Kenya.
- Should have at least one blank page for stamps.
- A clear, color scan of the page with your photo and details.
- Should not have significant damage or wear.
- Information on the e-Visa application must match your current passport.
- Dimensions: 45mm x 35mm.
- Background: Plain white or off-white.
- Position: Central and clear, covering about 70-80% of the height (approximately 32-36mm from chin to crown).
- Expression: Neutral with eyes open and mouth closed.
- Lighting: Even lighting without glare or reflections.
The application process for a Kenya visa through government channels involves several steps, including submission of the required documents and payment of the applicable fees. Detailed instructions are typically provided on the official Kenya visa application website.
After submitting your Kenya visa application through government channels, you can often check the status of your application on the official website. You'll typically need your application reference number and other relevant details.
For citizens of countries that require a visa to enter Kenya, a range of visa options is available to cater to various travel purposes. Below is a comprehensive overview of these Kenya visa types:
If you're planning to obtain a tourist visa for Kenya, here are some crucial tips to ensure a smooth and successful application process:
To avoid any last-minute complications, it's advisable to submit your visa application at least 7 days before your planned travel date. This provides ample time for processing and reduces the stress of rushing through the application.
Keep in mind that the processing fee for a Kenya visa, often referred to as the arrival fee, is non-refundable. Therefore, it's essential to be certain about your travel plans before making the payment.
Ensure that your visa application is complete and accurate. Incomplete or incorrect applications are typically rejected, which can lead to delays or the need to reapply. Double-check all information and provide all required documents.
While obtaining an E-Visa is a crucial step, it's important to note that having one does not automatically grant entry into Kenya. You must also meet other entry requirements, such as having valid travel documents and complying with immigration regulations.
Be aware that engaging in any business or employment activities in Kenya without the necessary permits or passes is illegal. Kenya has strict regulations in place, and violating these rules can lead to serious consequences.
Typically, a Kenya E-Visa is processed within two working days. Plan your visa application accordingly to ensure you receive your visa in time for your scheduled trip. Allow for some buffer time to account for any unexpected delays.
For travellers coming from countries where a visa is required to enter Kenya for purposes such as business, tourism, medical treatment, or other reasons, it's crucial to adhere to specific visa requirements during the application process.
Here is an in-depth explanation of the fundamental Kenya visa requirements:
The completion of a passenger locator form will only be mandatory for travellers who display flu-like symptoms upon their arrival at any entry point in Kenya. This update simplifies the health declaration process for travellers, making it a requirement only for those with specific symptoms, ensuring a smoother entry experience.
In summary, Kenya no longer offers visa on arrival options for travellers. Instead, there is a diverse range of visa options available for U.S. citizens, catering to various purposes such as tourism, business, or other visitation needs.
To have a smooth journey, it's crucial for travellers to fully understand the requirements, application processes, and validity durations associated with each visa type.
Additionally, when visiting Kenya, consider exploring unique attractions like the Mysterious and Haunted crater, which can add an extra special dimension to your trip.
How Many Entries Does The Kenya Visa Hold?
The Kenya E Visa allows for Single Entry only and grants a maximum stay of 90 days in total.
What Are The Photo Requirements For The Kenya Visa Application?
The passport photo should meet the following requirements:
- Format – JPEG/PDF.
- Height and width must be equal.
- Full face, front view, eyes open.
- Center head within frame, showing full head from the top of hair to the bottom of the chin.
- Plain light-coloured or white background.
- No shadows on the face or background.
- Without borders.
Do Children Also Need To Complete The Kenya Visa Application?
For nationals in category 2, children under 16 years do not pay for a visa to enter Kenya. For more information, visit the E Visa website and click on Eligibility.
In What Situation Do I Need A Kenya Transit Visa?
If you are not planning to stay in Kenya longer than 72 hours and your trip has a connection through Kenya, you will not need an approved eVisa. Instead, you will need a transit visa issued. Persons catching connecting flights directly without leaving the airport do not need to apply for Transit visas.
What Is The Processing Time For The Visa?
The processing time for a Kenya visa depends on the type of visa chosen and can take up to 10 days.
What Kenya Visa Do Indians Require?
American citizens require an e-visa to enter the Kenyan borders. They are required to fill out the Kenya application form with authentic personal, passport, and travel information.
Do You Need A Visa To Go To Kenya?
Yes, US citizens do need a Kenya visa to enter the Republic of Kenya legally. Fortunately, obtaining a Kenya visa for US citizens is a short and painless process. In only a few minutes, US citizens can apply for a Kenya visa online with Atlys.
Is The Kenya Visa Online Payment Safe?
Yes, the online payment process for the Kenya visa is safe. However, using the official online portal may encounter issues like website malfunctions, document uploads, or payment problems. Starting the application through Atlys can help avoid these issues.