Nairobi - Post Report Question and Answers

What do you wish you had known about this particular city/country before moving there?

I wish I'd known the hardships we would face with our housing at post. We still would have come, but it would have been good to know. I wish I'd realized that although it's a big city, it doesn't feel like it because the downtown area is just not easily accessible and explorable. I also wish I'd paid more attention to the altitude, as it was a struggle for a while. - Mar 2024

How easy it is to travel. - Mar 2022

I wish I had access to information to help me set up life. It was trial and error and a very bumpy road. - Aug 2021

The traffic is terrible, it is very expensive, it is bad for teens, and it is boring. - Nov 2020

That the crime issue is not bad if you just know where to go and when to go. Prior to that we had heard rumors from others and had us a bit worried, but reality has been very different. - Dec 2018

I wish I'd had a better understanding on the Kenyan sense of time. I always enjoy spending time with our Kenyan friends, but they seem to be late or on occasion, don't show up at all. Got an important meeting? Better call your Uber well in advance, because it can take upwards of 40 minutes for your driver to arrive - and they're only coming from a mile or two away.

I also wish I'd known that most Kenyans are always - and I mean always - seem to be on the look-out for extra cash. Even our closest Kenyan buddies are always looking for a way to one-up and get that little extra bit of cash out of your pocket. Kenyans are some of the most generous people, but they're also always looking to get theirs. I wish I had known how expensive it is to travel within Kenya, and Africa as a whole. It's pricey, even with resident rates. I wish I'd lowered my expectations for the Nairobi food scene. It's certainly decent, but it ain't what it's cracked up to be. - Dec 2018

I wish I would have understood the job situation better. It felt very difficult for me to find work. - Jun 2018

I wish I had known how very poor some people really are. Many times I have been shocked by the disparity in what westerners and East Africans consider acceptable living conditions. - Jul 2016

Security. Lack of culture and opportunities for entertainment. - Sep 2015

That it got chilly at times and there is no heating in the houses, especially coming from a very hot South Asian country where I got used to very hot weather. - Aug 2015

--how expensive the cars are, how horrible the roads are, how bad the traffic is. Not that you could do anything about it but it would have been good to be braced for it. --there is no decaffeinated anything --the temperate weather (being equatorial, I expected the tropics) --Kenyan culture is to not plan ahead financially. As an employer you will be asked for extra money all the time for school fees, funeral or wedding arrangements, etc. so get your loan/gift policy straight with a prospective employee before you hire. - Jul 2015

We like suprises, but be sure to give yourself ample time to buy a car and all the red tape that comes with getting Dip plates. - May 2015

Consider coming with a longer-term perspective since you can get quite comfortable here. - Dec 2014

The severity of the crime and terrorism situation. It's rated critical for both for a reason. - Jun 2014

How expensive everything is here, but you get what you pay for. Kenya is beautiful! - Jun 2014

I wish I had known how expensive it is. I was in Sao Paulo before this, which is also an expensive city, but it is at least developed and you can walk around. The COLA does not make up for the expense of the city and the expense of local and regional travel. I wish I knew how difficult it is to walk around without being paranoid that someone will rob you. - Mar 2014

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