Not surprisingly, as Kenya's principal city, it serves as a conduit for tourism into the host country's spectacular outback, likewise a major industry for the republic. Thus, Nairobi is a “destination city” for business and private aviation.
Operators heading for Nairobi will find an aviation infrastructure comparable to the U.K.'s, a remnant of Kenya's British Commonwealth (and colonial) heritage when the country was named British East Africa.
Operations are uniformly ICAO Pans Ops, altimetry is familiar QNH (i.e., referenced from MSL) expressed in feet, the country is WGS 84-compliant (so your synthetic vision system should overlay the real world), controllers speak flawless English and RVSM is in effect.
“There is nothing out of the ordinary in terms of operations in Kenya,” Wynand Meyer, Jeppesen's vendor relations manager for East and Southern Africa, told BCA. As at any North American or European airport, there are SIDs and STARs applying to Nairobi's principal airport, Jomo Kenyatta International (HKJK). So adapting to Kenyan airspace should pose no challenges.
Preparation for a flight to Nairobi begins with Kenyan entry requirements. Crewmembers and passengers require visas, but the former do not have to apply for them in advance and may obtain them on arrival. To qualify for this service, crewmembers must be in uniform attire, present official crew IDs, and arrive and leave on private aircraft. Most nationalities qualify for this policy, but there are some that do not — check country AIPs to determine which ones.
Meanwhile, passengers should apply for their visas in advance of the flight. General Declarations will be necessary for all aircraft occupants, and passengers and crew arriving from countries where yellow fever is present must carry valid yellow fever inoculation cards.
Landing permits are required, as well, with the minimum lead time of 72 hr. “We tend to apply for them through a local agent for faster service,” Jeppesen's Meyer said. “Going directly to the Kenyan Civil Aviation Authority is not recommended, as the agency is not always that responsive. On the other hand, they can surprise you and issue one in flight on quick notice, as they did recently for one of our clients.” All this applies to tech stops as well.
Situated on a plateau in southern Kenya, Nairobi has one airport capable of accommodating modern jet aircraft, the aforementioned Jomo Kenyatta International, elevation 5,327 ft. The field has only one runway, 6/24, which at 13,507 ft. in length can handle summertime density altitude surges. The airport is operational 24/7 and slots are not required. There are no noise restrictions or curfew. Nor are there any FBOs, but five handling companies are based there, and any of them can arrange fueling.
“Fuel is major brands,” Meyer said. “We recommend prearranging fueling with your handler to ensure promptness when you arrive. Fuel availability is never a problem, and our clients have had minimal problems operating in and out of Kenyatta.”