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FCO security advice updated...

Ilford, United...
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FCO security advice updated...

fco.gov.uk/en/…kenya1

And the word on the ground is...?

I'm cautiously optimistic that all will be ok but think my brother is getting worried as he just texted me to let me know of the update

Leigh-on Sea...
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31. Re: FCO security advice updated...

If someone doesn't feel comfortable in visiting a place and has the opportunity to cancel the trip , they should do whatever they feel they need to. You can't put the needs of Kenyan mouths to feed or or the country's dependance on tourism above your own feelings.

I worked in London all through the IRA bombing campaigns and during the more recent bombings when 50+ people were killed. Not a nice experience being trapped in an office all day, not having a clear picture of what was going on outside other than the sirens of the police, ambulances etc.and knowing that a bomb had gone off within walking distance. However, I still travelled to work on the usual train next day (2 fingers up to the terrorists). BUT, would I criticise the thousands of tourists who chose to cancel? NOT AT ALL. Why feel uncomfortable in London when you can visit Paris, Rome etc.

It is not as if Kenya wont still be there in the future , there will be other opportunities to visit . We are talking about holidays here, not life changing experiences .

My personal opinion is that you have to be unlucky to run into problems anywhere.

We were saddened to hear of the death of the French lady kidnapped in Lamu. She kindly let us share her boat to get from the airport to Lamu Town, when my disabled husband walked so slowly from the airstrip that we missed the main boat. We admired her spirit in being wheelchair bound but managing to live part of the year in an undeveloped area of Africa.

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32. Re: FCO security advice updated...

Totally agree gem but the only problem is that travel firms wont refund unless the government says people cant travel. Safety is more important than money but when people save hard for months, and a terrorist act may not even happen then its loose loose!

Grantham, United...
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33. Re: FCO security advice updated...

Mfuwe, now that did make me laugh, first time all day actually...have been really miserable today because of this. Just spoken to the other half and we've agreed that if the FCO advises against travel then we'll cancel and (reluctantly) go somewhere else, if not then we'll still go, due to fly on 5th November. But I feel bad as I can see that my other half genuinely doesn't feel comfortable with the prospect of travelling there but I (selfishly) don't want to lose over 3 months wages :-(

Isle of Wight
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34. Re: FCO security advice updated...

For what my opinion is worth (and remember it is only an opinion) I take heart from the line in the initial summary of the advice :-

'The overall level of the advice has not changed'

Now that said I believe that it must be an entirely personal decision and no two people are going to view this advice in the same way, as we are all different.

Like many others on this forum I would still go, which is just as well as we fly out on Wednesday.

To those unsure then try and keep an open mind but make the decision that you feel most comfortable with as, it is all very well us advising you of our views but you will be the ones actually affected.

We will be keeping a rational and open minded view of all advice given but we will have plenty of time to think as we are going out for 6 months (greedy!)

Kevin

nyc
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35. Re: FCO security advice updated...

If it means anything, I traveled to Kenya and Tanzania less than 2/mos after the first Embassy bombings in NBO and DAR in '98; before the insurance companies even knew the word terrorism to include in their policies. We were fine.

Another visit was less than 2/mos after 9/11 and all was fine, In fact, I was scheduled to be leaving this week for Kenya/Tanzania, but some personal issues came up even before any of the warnings were issued, but otherwise would have been on my way.

It's always an individual decision, but anyone up to no good can just as easily do so in your home town, city, country... you don't have to be heading to destinations far & wide. And, better look both ways when crossing the street!

NYC
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36. Re: FCO security advice updated...

Amen, we are going

Thanks to all for the advice etc.

Will post on our return!!!!

UK
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for Malindi, Ukunda, Kenya
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37. Re: FCO security advice updated...

I'm flying London to Nairobi on Kenya Airways tomorrow (Monday) night. I'm sure lots of others are too.

I wouldn't say you should discount travel advisories, but they are just advice. The week before last I was in Mali in West Africa. I accompanied an official Malian ministry of tourism group of mostly European tour operators and a few other journalists - part of a Malian initiative to try to get the official travel advisories on Mali overturned. Even I – quite outspoken about the minuscule level of risk attached to going there based on the tiny number of incidents – was half expecting we'd have an armed escort in Timbuktu and other areas where the FCO "advise against all travel". But we had no escort, there was no security threat of any kind and no sense of any problem. Hotels had no security at all. It was as if we weren't in the country the FCO was describing. The only problem was the lack of tourists and the pleas from locals to remind people to visit despite the warnings.

I'm not in any way suggesting that Kenya is similar in this respect to Mali, or that there aren't genuine fears in Kenya and genuine threats. But I'm certain the threats are no worse than the threats (and actual attacks, and countless alleged foiled plots) that the UK has lived under since the start of the Iraq war, and that all of us have got used to whenever we travel in the UK or visit any big city.

While thinking of cancelling is understandable because of 24-hour media and news-pumping, nobody needs to cancel their trip to Kenya - and your welcome will be even better.

Safe travels,

Richard

Nashville, Tennessee
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38. Re: FCO security advice updated...

I understand the posts. I agree with most of what is said. I do feel it is a personal decision, so no one can say whether you should be worried or not (worry is a personal feeling related to comfort with the situation).

I also know that attacks can happen anywhere.

However, it will be much easier for a terrorist to launch an attack in Kenya (borders somalia, small security force, limited resources, voiced threats, ect...) compared to a more industrialized and guarded city. For every successful terrorist attack in London or Chicago, there are approximately 20-25 foiled attacks. I doubt that same ratio exists in Nairobi or Lamu.

If all things are equal, I am going to be hard pressed at the current time to choose Kenya over say Tanzania or even southern africa (although not my first choice). My wife and her family are somewhat concerned.

I don't know if Kenya has the resources to aggressively change the situation over the next 3-4 moths to prevent things from deteriorating. I would take my chance on random act of kindness, but escalating concern in the region is different, I think....

Stephen

Nashville, Tennessee
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39. Re: FCO security advice updated...

Sorry, I meant to say I would rather take my chance on a random act of Terrorism than escalating concern in a region....

I think it is more likely to have a terrorist attack in Nairobi than a random US city I happen to be in. Just my 2 cents worth.

Stephen

Mtwapa, Kenya
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for Barcelona, Newcastle upon Tyne, Bamburi, Mtwapa
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40. Re: FCO security advice updated...

There does not seem to have been any announcement by Hillary Clinton or the State Department, their Travel Warning has not changed since December 28 2010

…state.gov/travel/cis_pa_tw/tw/tw_923.html

neither has anything appeared on the US Embassy in Nairobi's website, it is now nearly 10 am here so you might expect an urgent waening to have been placed by now.

All the references I can find all link back to a single AFP news item, all the other sources are just quoting it.

This appears in the local Business Daily today, again it quotes the same story before drawing inferences from it

http://tinyurl.com/6kgh8xc

Edited: 24 October 2011, 07:55