The Namanga border crossing between Southern Kenya and Northern Tanzania is located about 160 km southeast of Nairobi and 100 km north of Arusha. The Kenyan side of the border is in Kajiado County, while the Tanzanian side is in Longido District. Namanga is one of the major border crossings between
the two countries due to its proximity to the two major cities.
The border is a One Stop Border Post (OSBP). The main objective of OSBPs is to facilitate trade and travel by reducing the number of stops made at a border crossing, thereby reducing the time required for clearance at the border. This objective is achieved by co-locating exit and entry controls of both countries on each side of the border, or in one common facility with simplified procedures and joint controls where feasible. At an OSBP, border controls of the two Partner States are co-located in a way that people, goods, and vehicles stop only once, in the country of entry, for both exit formalities from one Partner State and entry formalities into the other.
DOCUMENTS NEEDED TO CROSS NAMANGA BORDER
In addition to taking a flight, you may also consider the option of entering Kenya or Tanzania by land through the Namanga Border. Nationals of most countries require a visa to enter Tanzania. The easiest option is to apply for an e-Visa online. There are currently 158 countries that are eligible for this electronic visa for Tanzania including Australia, Canada, the United States, and the United Kingdom. The e-Visa can be applied for rapidly and securely by filling out the user-friendly Tanzania e-Visa application form, paying the fee by credit or debit card and then waiting just a few days or less to receive the visa at the email address that you provided. The documents required to cross the border include:
- Valid Passport
- Yellow fever card
- Visa (for non EAC citizens)
- Proof of Covid-19 Vaccination Certificate/PCR Test
- EAC Citizens can use a temporary permits if one does not have a passport
- If driving, a Car logbook, valid driving license, Valid insurance.
There are various options for traveling from Nairobi to Namanga:
- There are shuttle buses to the border that pick up guests from many of the city’s main hotels.
- There is also a bus service to Namanga from Nairobi’s main bus station such as Impala Buses.
- For those looking to go by private means, these can also be caught from the bus station. Most of the shuttle buses also provide private transfers.
Things to Keep in Mind When Crossing the Namanga Border
- Do not change money at the border unless advised by your bus driver and given a specific person to do so. There are numerous touts on the road to the border offering to change money and selling insurance. Some of them can be quite forceful. It is best to politely decline if you are not interested.
- If you have chosen not to get your hassle-free e-Visa and instead to queue at the border then be sure to insist on a receipt for the visa from the immigration official as this may be later requested.
- There have been reports of Tanzanian police harassing Kenyan drivers. The Tanzanian authorities are aware of this problem and are working to find a solution, but a way to avoid this possibility is to opt to travel by shuttle or by bus.