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Last Minute question

Hamburg, New York
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10 posts
53 reviews
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Last Minute question

On my way tomorrow morning to Kenya for a 12 day safari. I think I'm as prepared as I can be but still have a question:

I bought an unlocked cell phone and believe I can purchase a sim card for the phone in Nairobi airport. Any idea on how much this will cost? We only want to be able to make periodic phone calls home (to U.S.). Will they take care of hooking the phone up so that we're ready to go?

Will be on a 12 day safari after 2 days in Nairobi. Any tips or hints?

Mombasa, Kenya
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607 posts
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1. Re: Last Minute question

You can buy a sim card at the airport on arrival, near gate 11 I think, before you go down the ramp towards the immigration. You can choose from 2 providers: Safaricom and Airtel. Safaricom sim card is Kshs 100 and calls to the US are Kshs 5 per minute, per second billing. Airtel sim card is either Kshs 100 or 50, calls to the US fixed lines are Kshs 3.60 per minute. In my personal experience Safaricom provides better coverage and service is more reliable, I have given up on Airtel lines a number of times. Top up scratch cards are widely available everywhere. When you purchase a line, make sure that they register it otherwise the line may be blocked after one call if it is unregistered. Registration process is easy, they will need your passport and if they need your address, give them the name of your first hotel.

Enjoy your trip!

Larissa

Tijara Beach Hotel

Hamburg, New York
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10 posts
53 reviews
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2. Re: Last Minute question

Thank you so much. I'm so excited I can hardly contain myself. First trip to Kenya!!!

Nairobi, Kenya
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193 posts
1 review
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3. Re: Last Minute question

Safaricom is your best option, it may be expensive as Tijara_Beach explained above but its reliable. Welcome to Kenya.

Mombasa, Kenya
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607 posts
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4. Re: Last Minute question

You are welcome! Expensive is relative here as far as mobiles are concerned. With USD being apprx 83 shillings (around there), you can talk to your family in the US for over 15 min for one dollar! I think it is pretty cheap.

Enjoy your trip, I am excited for you :) I hope it is going to be your first of many trips as Africa in general and Kenya in particular somehow crawl under your skin.

I think a trip is what you make out of it. If one is set to look for faults, they can find many anywhere they go! If your mindset is to enjoy and not to pay attention to small issues which might come up, you will enjoy it. The main experience you are coming for here is to see animals, see beautiful landscapes and enjoy nature and people who you will meet. Not everything and everyone is perfect, as anywhere in the world, so be positive and you will enjoy your trip even more!

Would love to hear about your trip once you are back :)

Larissa

Tijara Beach Hotel

Bungoma, Kenya
Destination Expert
for Kenya
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2,798 posts
2 reviews
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5. Re: Last Minute question

I've been using Airtel for a long time with no problems!! MUCH cheaper to call US from Kenya than the other way round. With Airtel to USA, the cost is for both mobiles and landlines (only landlines in UK). I don't know about Safaricom.

An Airtel SIM card costs 50/-, but as a tourist, you might get asked for 100/-.

For registration, you may need to have a photocopy of your passport. Be prepared.

Have a wonderful trip.

6. Re: Last Minute question

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