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Kenya eVisa: Common mistakes and how to solve them | iVisa
6 min read
Updated on May 14, 2024

For travelers eyeing Kenya as their next destination, there's an important step to consider – the Kenya ETA application.

Getting a Kenya eVisa is a must-do for travelers excited to see Kenya's amazing wildlife and rich cultural scenes. However, before packing your bags, you need to apply for a Kenya ETA. While the application process is seemingly simple, errors can occur, potentially complicating your travel plans.

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Think about all the fun stuff waiting for you – like floating above the Masai Mara in a hot air balloon, unwinding on the sun-soaked shores of Lamu, or navigating the bustling markets of Nairobi. Once you're done reading this blog, you'll be able to avoid common mistakes encountered during the Kenya ETA application process and ensure your application is as flawless as Kenya's natural beauty.

Do I need a Kenya eVisa or a Kenya ETA?

Starting from January 2024, the Kenya eVisa has been replaced by something new – the Kenya Electronic Travel Authorization (ETA). This change means that instead of the traditional eVisa, you'll need to apply for an ETA before heading to Kenya.

Every foreign visitor to this East African nation must apply for an ETA unless you're a national of an East African Community member state.

What do you need for the Kenya ETA? Here's everything you have to know.

Common errors when applying for a Kenya ETA

When you're getting ready to apply for your Kenya ETA, it's easy to bump into a few hurdles along the way. These snags can slow you down or, worse, mess up your travel plans. Here are the most common errors you may encounter and what to do about them.

  1. Account creation issues: Setting up your account to start your application can be a bit confusing. A simple solution is to follow the instructions carefully. If you're stuck, look for a help guide on the website or reach out to customer support.

  2. Trouble with uploading photos and documents: Sometimes, the photos or documents you upload aren't quite right. Maybe the photo's blurry, or a document may be missing. Double-check that your photo is clear and meets the visa photo requirements. For documents, make sure you've got everything you need before you start your application. If you upload a file not in the supported format, your application may be denied.

  3. Payment problems: You may be having an issue with your payment going through. This could be because of a typo in your payment info or your bank blocking the transaction. The best move is to double-check your payment details. If everything looks good, you might need to call your bank to clear things up.

Kenya ETA declined: Not meeting the requirements

Sometimes, even with the best intentions, travelers find their Kenya ETA application declined. This can be frustrating, especially when you're all set for your Kenyan adventure.

One of the top reasons for a declined ETA is missing or incomplete information in your application. Before submitting your application, double-check to make sure you've filled out every section and attached all the necessary documents.

Another reason is passport validity issues. Your passport needs to be valid for at least six months from your intended arrival date in Kenya. If it's set to expire sooner, you might need to renew your passport before applying for the ETA.

Even small mistakes in your application can lead to a denial. This includes filling in your name or passport number incorrectly. Make sure everything you enter matches exactly with what's on your passport and your supporting documents.

Application mistakes when traveling with minors

If you're planning a trip to Kenya with minors in tow, remember: every traveler needs their own Kenya ETA application – and yes, this includes the youngest members of your family, too.

As a parent or guardian, you can complete the ETA application on behalf of your children. You'll need to provide the same type of information for your kids as you do for yourself, including passport details and travel plans.

Just like you would for yourself, make sure the information you provide for each child is accurate, matches what's on their passport, and is valid for at least six months after your intended travel date.

Do I need to apply for a Kenya ETA when in transit?

If you're passing through Kenya on your way to another destination, you might be wondering about the ETA requirements.

If your layover in Kenya is short and you're staying within the airport's international transit area, you won't need an ETA. This is great for those quick stops between flights when you're not planning to explore outside the airport.

If you have a layover longer than 72 hours or plan to leave the airport to explore a bit of Kenya, even for a short time, you'll need to apply for an ETA. This ensures you're covered, no matter what your plans are, during your stop in Kenya.

For those who need to apply because of a long layover or plan to leave the airport, make sure you allow yourself enough time to get your ETA sorted before your trip.

Making a mistake with your Kenya ETA: How to never make another one

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Applying for your Kenya ETA doesn't have to be a headache. We're here to make getting your Kenya ETA as easy as possible. Forget the hassle of dealing with banks or worrying about which payment method to use. With us, those problems are a thing of the past.

You won't have to face the frustration of a failed payment message. We accept a broad range of payment options designed to fit your needs and make the process simple.

You can fill out your visa application on our platform in just about 10 minutes. After that, sit back and relax; we'll have your ETA ready in just a few days.

Why was my Kenya ETA declined?

Finding out your Kenya ETA was declined can throw a wrench in your travel plans. Let's look at common reasons this might happen.

  • Your ETA has expired: Kenya ETAs usually last for 3 months from when they're given out. Always double-check your ETA dates before traveling to ensure it's still valid.

  • You didn't meet the entry requirements: Kenya asks that everyone coming in on an ETA has a few key things: a valid passport, a ticket to leave Kenya, and enough money for their stay. If you miss any of these, you might not get in.

  • You have a criminal record: If you've got a criminal record, this could be a deal-breaker for entering Kenya.

  • You're seen as a security concern: If the Kenyan government thinks a traveler might not be safe to let into the country, they'll say no to your ETA.

Getting a "no" on your ETA application is disappointing, but it doesn't have to end there. Checking why it was declined is your first step. Once you know the reason, you can see if it's something you can fix when reapplying.

To take some of the sting out of a declined ETA, we offer a Denial Protection service for an extra fee. If your application doesn't go through, you'll get your ETA application fee back. This way, you can try again or make other plans without losing out.

Where can I get more information?

Got questions about applying for the Kenya ETA? Our customer support team is here to help. Please send us a message on our live chat or at [email protected].

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