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Liquids in hand luggage
New restrictions regulating how much liquids you may carry as hand luggage on air flights have been implemented during the last years. On international flights to and from East Africa, the new restrictions may also include tax-free liquids bought at airports.
Check with your airline or travel company which rules apply on your flights.
For relevant links, see "More web sites" below.
Re-confirming return flights
Some airlines require you to re-confirm your flight back home from Africa. The re-confirmation should be done at least 72 hours before departure. Other airlines, for example KLM, no longer require such re-confirmations.
If re-confirmation is required, you can ask your tour guide, local tour operator or the hotel reception to help you.
  More web sites
Permitted and Prohibited Items
By US Transportation Security Administration.
New EU rules on liquids from 6 November 2006
By Air Transport Portal of the European Commission. Applies to all airports in the EU, Norway, Iceland and Switzerland.
Safari glossary
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Planning your safari:
Flying to Africa
The most common way of travelling to Kenya or Tanzania in East Africa is by scheduled airline flights. Airlines fly to Nairobi, Mombasa, Kilimanjaro, Dar es Salaam or Zanzibar from different parts of the world. Some charter companies fly to Mombasa and Zanzibar.

Air fares and seat availability
Book your flight ticket early, if possible. Seats on the scheduled flights are often sold out, and the least expensive ticket classes are usually sold first. The difference between buying six months and the day before travelling may be a few hundred USD.

Make sure to book your flight ticket in time if you want to travel during peak seasons. The flights during Christmas and New Year may already be full in October.

Prices are highest for flights during approx. 15 December to 10 January, and 1 July to 10 September. Prices are lowest from approx. 1 April to 30 June (April to May is a rainy season in East Africa).

Charter tours
Charter tours to East Africa are usually coastal holidays, to witch you may add-on a safari. The safaris sold this way by the charter companies are usually quite short.

You are not restricted to these, though, but may book a safari of your liking with a safari travel company in your home country, or with a tour operator in Kenya or Tanzania. A good safari may cost you as much as or more than your charter tour.

Kenya Airways flies within Africa and to Europe.

Flying to inland Kenya
Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (NBO/HKJK) outside Nairobi is the most common point of entry in Kenya. This is the most convenient place to fly for safaris in most parts of Kenya, and for Mount Kenya climbs. A number of international airlines operate the airport, which is located a 30-minute drive from central Nairobi.

From Nairobi, local East African airlines can fly you to for example Mombasa on the coast and to Kilimanjaro and Zanzibar in Tanzania.

Connecting to airborne safaris
Airborne safaris start from Wilson Airport (WIL/HKNW), a 30-minute transfer drive from Jomo Kenyatta International.

Connections to the coast
There are domestic flights from Jomo Kenyatta International Airport and Wilson Airport to Mombasa, Malindi and Lamu on the coast.

Airlines flying to Nairobi:
· Air India
· Air Tanzania
· British Airways
· Emirates
· Ethiopian Airlines
· Kenya Airways
· Sabena
· Saudi Arabian Airlines
· South African Airways
· Swiss Air
· Uganda Airlines

Flying to the Kenyan coast
Moi International Airport (MBA/HKMO) just outside Mombasa on the Kenyan coast is mainly operated by domestic airlines and charter companies. Most tourist passengers come for a beach holiday, but some parks (especially Tsavo) may easily be visited by road from Mombasa. Airborne safaris to for example Tsavo and Masai Mara also start from Moi International.

Airlines flying to Mombasa:
· Air Europe
· Austrian Airlines
· Britannia Airways
· British Airways
· Brussels Airlines
· Condor
· Corsairfly
· Edelweiss Air
· Eurofly
· Kenya Airways
· Malév Hungarian Airlines
· Monarch Airlines
· Oman Air

Precision Air flies domestic flights within Tanzania and international flights to Kenya.

Flying to northern Tanzania
Kilimanjaro International Airport (JRO/HTKJ) is the most convenient destination for safaris in northern Tanzania (Serengeti, Ngorongoro, Lake Manyara and Tarangire), and for Kilimanjaro climbing tours. The airport is located a 45-minute drive east of Arusha, the city where most safaris in this area start.

KLM has daily scheduled flights from Amsterdam, operated with MD-11's or, occasionally, Boeing 777's. These flights land in the evening, so you need to stay a night in a hotel or lodge in the Arusha–Moshi area before activities such as safaris or mountain climbs can begin.

No other airline has scheduled flights directly to Kilimanjaro from outside of Africa. The most common non-direct options are flying to Kilimanjaro via Addis Abeba in Ethiopia (Ethiopian Airlines), via Nairobi in Kenya (a number of European, Asian and African airlines), or via Dar es Salaam (a few European airlines).

Some of these airlines allow you to arrive in the morning, so it's possible to begin the local activities at once; there is time enough that day to travel to and even do some game driving in Tarangire or Lake Manyara, or to travel to the Ngorongoro Crater.

Nairobi–Arusha shuttle
There are also scheduled shuttle busses from Nairobi in Kenya to Arusha in Tanzania. That means, you can fly to Nairobi and from there continue to Arusha in Tanzania by bus. This is a cheaper option than continuing to Arusha by air plus airport transfer. The travel time by bus is 4–5 hours.

We ourselves prefer to avoid these shuttle services for safety reasons. Speed is often too high, considering the narrow road and the poor paving.

Connecting to airborne safaris
Many safari flights to the parks in northern Tanzania don't depart from Kilimanjaro International, but from the domestic airport in Arusha (ARK/HTAR). The transfertime between these airports is about one hour.

Airlines flying to Kilimanjaro:
· Air Tanzania
· Ethiopian Airlines
· Condor

KLM MD-11 boarding at Kilimanjaro International Airport.

Flying to southern Tanzania
For safaris in southern Tanzania (Mikumi, Selous and Ruaha), flying to Julius Nyerere International Airport (DAR/HTDA) in Dar es Salaam on the Tanzanian coast is most convenient. A few airlines fly there from outside Africa.

From Dar es Salaam, you can continue to these parks by the main road to Zambia, or (for Selous and Ruaha) by scheduled flights in smaller safari aircraft from Julius Nyerere International.

Airlines flying to Dar es Salaam:
· Air Tanzania
· British Airways
· Ethiopian Airlines
· Kenya Airways
· Swiss Air

Flying to Zanzibar
Zanzibar International Airport (ZNZ/HTZA), or Kisauni Airport, is mainly operated by domestic airlines (for example from Arusha, Kilimanjaro and Dar es Salaam) and charter companies. There is also an interesting connection to Nairobi, allowing safari-goers in Kenya to easily continue their holiday on the beaches of Zanzibar.

There are safari flights from Zanzibar (via a touchdown in Dar es Salaam) to Selous and Ruaha in southern Tanzania.

When departing from Zanzibar International Airport, you have to pay a local departure tax. It's USD 30 (in December 2007) per person for international flights, and USD 5 for flights within Tanzania.

Airlines flying to Zanzibar:
· Air Tanzania
· Air Italy
· Belair Airlines
· Blue Panorama Airlines
· Condor
· Edelweiss Air
· Eurofly
· Kenya Airways
· Livingston Airlines
· Neos
· South African Airways

Transfer to and from airports
Most safari tour packages include all necessary airport transfers. If not included, there are shuttle and taxi services between the airports and cities. Shuttle services are the least expensive, costing USD 10–20 one way.

Cessna approaching an airstrip in the Tanzanian bush.

Flying within East Africa
Many safari-goers combine activities in different parts of East Africa, for example a safari and a beach holiday. Local airlines offer good flight connections between the most frequented safari areas, beach resort areas and cities, and between the East African countries.

More about safaris by air

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Page updated 11 March 2010