Sept 2015 – How to get a Visa for Kenya – REVISED

Below is the very latest information on Kenya Visa applications, which can now be obtained by both online and manual methods.

The Kenyan Government has revised its Immigration law where you will be able to obtain Visas on Arrival.

Following the implementation of the E-visa application for all visa nationals visiting Kenya, the Ministry of interior and co-ordination of national Government has since reviewed this process and decided that they will run both the E-Visa platform and the manual platform concurrently. The manual platform will allow application and payment in cash as was the case previously.  Kindly note that for all category III nationals the status quo still remains. Their visa application has to be approved by the director of Immigration services. They will not be issued with visas on arrival and neither can they apply for E-Visas.  The category III nationals are listed below:   Afghanistan. Armenia. Azerbaijan. Cameroon. Eritrea. Iraq. North Korea( Dem.peoples rep)  Kosovo. Lebanon. Libya. Mali. Palestinian Territory. Senegal. Somalia. Syria. Tajikistan.

The information below was supplied by the Kenya Association of Tour Operators and lists the latest advice on how to get a visa for Kenya.

kenya visaWebsite: A new website fully dedicated to the E-Visa (www.evisa.go.ke) will go live this week. This will allow applicants to easily go straight to the E-Visa application away from the clutter of other Government services currently offered on the E-Citizen website. The new (and current) website is mobile phone enabled which means applicants can complete the application from an internet-enabled mobile phone.

Speed of Approval: The applications are now being approved as fast as within 24 hrs. All efforts will be made to move towards real-time approval to cater for the “last-minute” travellers as well as Charter operations which both require quick approvals.

Photos: The difficulty with uploading the required photos had been cited as a concern and the system will now accept photos taken and uploaded from a mobile phone.

Payment: It was clarified that the E-Visa system at present only accepts Debitor Pre-Paid Cards.  It does NOT accept Credit cards.  The need to include Credit cards was raised and is being looked into.

Application by Agents/Tour Operators:  Taking cognisance that a majority of applications are lodged by Agents or Tour Operators, the E-Visa system will allow local Tour Operators and Overseas Travel Agents to register and make visa applications for tourists intending to visit Kenya.  All applications (as many as may be required from time to time) will be made by the Agent / Tour Operator using their own company email address but providing the details for each applicant. The approved E-Visas will be sent back to the Tour Operator to forward to the client.

Application period for Visas:  The visa is valid for 90 days from the date of approval and not from the date of arrival in Kenya. A number of visitors have already applied for and received visa approval even though they are expected to arrive in November 2015 (after the expiry date). The improved E-visa system will automatically reject any visa applications whose date of arrival is outside the validity period.

Key Issues to Note from 1st September, 2015:

The manual application for the visa on arrival will no longer be available with effect from 1st September, 2015.

For a limited period of 60 Days (September and October) there will be E-Visa Kiosks at both JKIA and MIA.  These will allow any visitor arriving without a Visa to apply for the E-Visa on arrival and receive real-time approval. This will only be for nationals previously allowed to get a visa on arrival.
The downside of this is that there will be a longer delay to enter the country while the Visa is applied for and approved.

No passengers will be turned away at their airport of departure on account of not having a visa. The E-Visa kiosks will enable application on arrival and in extreme cases (an emergency), the Director confirmed that his officers would be able to facilitate a manual application. This would be an exception to the rule.

For visitors requiring to enter Kenya twice from outside East Africa, a facility to apply for “double entry (not the multiple visa) will be added to the E-Visa website.

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