What is life like for expats in Nairobi


It is advisable to take a look at the continuously updated security information from the Federal Foreign Office before entering the country. There is the possibility of registering in the Foreign Office's crisis prevention list.

Crime remains worryingly high in Kenya, as the US State Department notes in its security advisories for diplomats. Reliable statistical material is hardly available, but methods, fashions and current crime hotspots are a topic at almost every barbecue and are now being researched officially. It is best to find out about the necessary safety precautions in your living and working environment on site. Before elections, the United Nations usually make stockpiling and evacuation recommendations in Nairobi; some embassies have drawn up emergency plans and maintain a radio network so that they do not have to rely on cell phones.

The UN security service in Nairobi assumes an increased risk of terrorist attacks; He forwards analyzes and behavioral tips to employees on a weekly basis, as well as current information on particular danger areas, such as neighborhoods in which robberies are more common or particularly endangered road sections such as Kitale-Lodwar. In general, the UN security officers advise you to be particularly vigilant and warn against staying in busy places, in shopping centers, hotels, bus stations, bars and restaurants, especially at peak times. A NoGo are bus tips to Lamu, also because of the terrorist threat. The Malindi - Lamu road link has been considered particularly dangerous for years.

Before renting a house or an apartment, it makes sense to inquire about the security situation in the neighborhood (not to mention the water supply and other amenities such as electricity). Technical security by means of fences / bars, safe heaven and / or alarm systems as well as private security personnel can drastically increase the cost of living, which is often high anyway. It is advisable to clarify in advance of the posting who will bear the costs. The private security services are among the largest employers in Kenya; the UN stipulates which services may and may not be used. Other sending organizations have also defined standards for this.

It is also advisable to have good contact with the neighbors and, if necessary, with the domestic workers, in order to be better informed about problems and the security situation in the neighborhood. The issue of safety has taken on a large dimension in Nairobi's expat community. Although mostly Kenyans are victims of the rampant violent crime, the guests from abroad cannot avoid the question of what precautionary measures they want to take.

The greatest risk, however, is traffic, according to the WHO with up to 13,000 road deaths annually, a third of which are passengers in local and long-distance public transport, but also many pedestrians and two-wheelers. That is why the World Health Organization has started a program to improve road safety.