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The Department of State advises U.S. citizens to reconsider travel abroad due to the global impact of COVID-19. For more information, see the Department’s Global Health Advisory.
August 3 Update
Health and Travel Alert: U.S. Embassy Nairobi July 31, 2020
Event: This afternoon the Kenyan Ministry of Transport, Infrastructure, Housing, Urban Development and Public Works revised yesterday’s announcement regarding the resumption of international air travel as of August 1st. According to this directive, the United States is one of 18 countries whose nationals will be exempt from quarantine upon arrival if the following conditions are met:
- The passenger does not have a body temperature above 37.5°C (99.5°F);
- The passenger does not have a persistent cough, difficulty breathing or other flu-like symptoms;
- The passenger has a negative PCR-based COVID-19 test conducted within 96 hours before travel.
Please note that U.S. citizen travelers coming from California, Florida and Texas will not be exempt and will be required to quarantine upon arrival either at Government of Kenya-designated facility or at their Kenyan residence.
U.S. citizens in Kenya may book tickets for departing flights. There is no Government of Kenya mandate for a COVID-19 test before arriving at the airport complex. However, please check with your airline whether they have their own COVID-19 testing requirements. Similarly, outbound travelers must abide by the COVID-19 related requirements of the destination country.
Please note that all who enter the airport terminal may be subject to temperature checks. If a passenger is confirmed to have a fever, he/she will not be allowed to board their flight. Those with an elevated body temperature shall be referred for secondary assessment by Port Health staff who will handle the passenger in accordance with public health guidelines.
Evidence of a flight is sufficient to exempt drivers and ticketed passengers from any penalty normally incurred by those out after curfew hours. Those showing proof of an air ticket and boarding pass shall be allowed to proceed to their hotels and/or residences.
Reminder: U. S. Embassy Nairobi strongly recommends that U.S. Citizens and nationals enroll in STEP, the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program, at step.state.gov. STEP enrollees receive important information from the Embassy about health conditions, safety alerts, and travel updates. Enrollment enables the Embassy to contact you in the event of an emergency. If you have previously enrolled in STEP, we recommend that you log into your STEP account to ensure your details are current, your country of travel information is correct, and that you set your departure date as ‘indefinite.’ These steps will enable you to receive all our embassy messaging. For any immediate need, U.S. citizens in an emergency can call 1-888-407-4747 from the United States and Canada or (plus) 1-202-501-4444 from overseas.
Actions to Take:
- Visit the Kenyan Ministry of Health’s COVID-19 website for updated information.
- Consult the CDC website for the most up-to-date information.
- For the most recent information on what you can do to reduce your risk of contracting COVID-19 please see the CDC’s latest recommendations.
- Visit the COVID-19 crisis page on travel.state.gov for the latest information.
- Visit our Embassy webpage on COVID-19 for information on conditions in Kenya
- Visit the Department of Homeland Security’s website on the latest travel restrictions to the U.S.
- As of August 2, 2020 there are 22,053 confirmed cases of COVID-19 throughout Kenya, with 8,477 recovered patients and 369 related deaths.
- The cessation of movement order that barred entry into and out of Nairobi, Mombasa and Mandera counties lapsed on July 7th. Any movement by public transport vehicles into and out of these areas requires transport providers to first acquire mandatory certification from the Ministry of Health, in consultation with the Ministry of Transport. Users of public or private transport are required to wear a protective mask.
- On June 6 it was announced that nightly curfew hours were revised to 9:00 pm to 4:00 am. The national curfew was extended for an additional 30 days on July 27th. Those violating the curfew may be arrested and put in mandatory quarantine for 14 days. Those taken into government quarantine will not be charged a fee for their stay at the facility.
- On July 6 the GoK announced that the prohibition against social and political gatherings is extended for an additional 30 days.
- Bars are closed until further notice. There are no sales of alcoholic drinks and beverages in eateries and restaurants throughout Kenya effective July 28th. The closing time for restaurants and eateries was amended from 8pm to 7pm as of July 28th, for the next 30 days.
- Places of worship may begin phased re-opening in conformity with applicable guidelines developed by the Inter-Faith Council. As outlined on July 6, guidelines mandate a maximum of one hundred (100) participants allowed at each worship ceremony and must not be more than one hour in duration. In-person worship shall not include congregants under age thirteen (13) years or over fifty-eight (58) or persons with underlying health conditions. Sunday schools and madrassas will remain suspended until further notice.
- On May 16th, movement restrictions were imposed into and out of Kenya through the Kenyan-Tanzania and Kenyan-Somali international borders, with exceptions for cargo vehicles.
- Domestic air travel resumed on July 15th under Ministry of Health and Transport guidelines. International flights resumed on August 1st. Arriving U.S. passengers are exempt from quarantine if the following conditions are met: 1) The passenger does not have a body temperature above 37.5°C (99.5°F); 2) The passenger does not have a persistent cough, difficulty breathing or other flu-like symptoms; 3) The passenger has a negative PCR-based COVID-19 test conducted within 96 hours before travel.
- According to a July 7 announcement by CS Magoha, basic educational institutions will reopen January 2021. University and colleges may open in September 2020 after meeting strict COVID-19 regulations.
Entry and Exit Requirements:
- The Government of Kenya established an online portal to extend visitor and resident visas. Please see: https://fns.immigration.go.ke/
- If any person exhibits symptoms such as cough, or fever, they should present themselves to the nearest health facility for testing. Those taken into government quarantine will not be charged a fee for their stay at the facility.
- Medical quarantine will be extended an extra 14 days for those who test positive for COVID-19 in government quarantine facilities.
- On June 15, the GoK updated the list of approved quarantine facilities. There are nine government facilities and 55 participating hotels on the revised list.
- Kenya Ministry of Health: Twitter: @MOH_Kenya, Facebook: MinistryofHealthKE, website: http://www.health.go.ke/
- Report any suspected cases to the Kenya Ministry of Health hotline numbers: 0800721316, 0732353535, 0729471414
- View U.S. Embassy Kenya’s Most Recent Alerts