The process of applying for a passport in Kenya is now simplified and convenient with the introduction of the services online. This article will focus on how to apply for a passport in Kenya.
Kenya introduced the e-passport system in 2017 per the international standards that also govern the East African community passport application process.
This enables the Kenya government to issue passports containing the holder’s biodata. This enhances its credibility and security.
The government has also increased the number of passport processing centers with introductions of these services across various towns and cities.
Below is a list of offices where you can get passport processing services in the country.
- Nairobi- Nyayo house
These services are also available in various Kenyan embassies across the world.
Various Types of Kenyan passports
There are 3 different types of passports that you can apply for depending on your status and needs. These include;
- Diplomatic passport– This is given to the people with diplomatic status.
- Ordinary passport– It is the most common type of passport and is issued to any Kenyan.
- East African passport – This is issued to facilitate travel within the East African community. It covers countries such as Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, Rwanda, and Burundi and is valid for 6 months.
Features of the Kenyan e-passport
- It contains a biometric identifier
- Has an electronic chip
What are the passport Application fees?
The passport application process attracts different fees depending on the type of passport. You have to pay the fees for the passport processing to happen.
Below are the current applicable fees.
|Passport type||Fee (Kenya Shillings)|
|32 Pages Ordinary passport “A” Series||4,550|
|48 pages Ordinary passport “B” Series||6,050|
|64 Pages Ordinary passport “C” Series||7,550|
|Diplomatic passport (48 pages)||7,550|
|East African Passport||990|
How to Apply for a Passport in Kenya
- Register for an e-citizen account- E-citizen is the government portal where you get services online. Any Kenyan can register on the portal. After registration, you should click on the Department of immigration services and select the passport application.
- Fill out the online passport application form – You are then required to fill in your details as per the form. You should also ensure to upload all the documents requested.
- Payment of the passport application fee- This is the next step after updating your details. The payment will depend on the type of passport you are applying for. You can pay using different methods such as mobile money, both debit and credit cards, or bank transfers.
- Print the completed application form and 3 invoices copies- After making the payment, ensure to print at least three copies of both the application form and the payment receipts.
- Presentation of your document- With the online process complete, you should visit your nearest office to present the documents. The applicant must be physically present for this process.
- Collection of the passport- For local Kenyan citizens, you will receive an SMS notification with instructions on how to collect your passport. However, for Kenyans in diaspora, the ministry of Foreign Affairs is responsible for delivering processed passports to the foreign passport centers stated earlier in the article. It takes at least 10 working days to get your passport as a first-time applicant.
Requirements for an ordinary Kenyan passport application
- Both an original and photocopy of the birth certificate.
- A duly filled passport application form
- 3 copies of the payment invoices
- 3 current passport size photos
- Both an original and photocopy of your identity card
- Certified copy of the recommenders identity card or passport
- For minors, you require the parent/guardian consent letter.
- Photocopies of parents’ identity cards/ death certificates where applicable.
- Payment invoice
Requirements for Diplomatic Passport Application
- Duly filled passport application form
- 3 copies of the payment invoice
- 3 current passport size photos
- Certified copy of the recommender’s identity card or passport
- A letter showing that you meet the diplomat criteria dictated in the Kenyan Citizenship and Immigration Regulations,2012
Specifications of the Passport size photo
- Should be recent and not more than 6 months old.
- Have a white background without any background shadows.
- You should not wear any sunglasses when taking the photo,
- Your hair should not cover your ears. It should either be tied at the back or tucked behind your ears.
- You must be looking directly at the camera with a neutral expression.
- The photograph dimensions are 5.5cm by 5.5cm(207pixels*207pixels)
A recommender is a necessity when applying for a passport. To qualify as a recommender, you must be a holder of a valid Kenyan identity card or valid passport and not a relative to the applicant
Some of the most preferred recommenders include religious leaders, civil servants, legal practitioners, or bank officials.
How Can the Passport Application be Declined?
Some situations could lead to declining of your passport application. Some of these situations are;
- When you are not a Kenyan citizen
- Failure to submit all the documents is per the requirements.
- Provision of false information in the application process.
- If you are found guilty of passport fraud, forgery, or any international crimes.
Conclusion on How to Apply for Passport in Kenya
Every Kenyan has a right to get a passport as per the law. Taking the passport application process online has made it easier and faster to get it.
The increase of the passport application centers has also made it more convenient in comparison to when the services were only available in 2 locations.
However, in case you have any challenges, you can engage the services of a professional such as a legal person to assist in the process.
To recap, below are some of the steps on how to apply for a passport in Kenya.
- Register for an e-citizen account
- Fill in the online passport application form
- Pay the prescribed fee
- Print the completed application form and 3 invoices copies.
- Attach copies of the required documents
- Submit the documents in person to the nearest immigration office and get your bio-metrics taken
- Pick up your passport