How to: Getting a Kenyan passport for your child

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We recently applied for Claire’s and Heidi’s Kenyan passports. For any of you whose children have the right to Kenyan citizenship (baby has at least one Kenyan parent), here is how the process went for us. Thankfully, it’s more straightforward than the process for getting a Kenyan birth certificate!

We filled out the Form 19 passport application, and collected the following:
– our children’s Kenyan birth certificate (ORIGINALS and COPIES) **See PPS note**
– both parents’ birth certificates (ORIGINALS and COPIES)
– both parents’ IDs / passports (ORIGINALS and COPIES)
– Three colored passport photos. One of the passport photos needs to be signed on the back and notarized by a lawyer, who also needs to sign part of the application form swearing that the baby is who we say she is.
– Certified copy of the recommender’s national ID
– A consent letter (if your child is under 18) from one of the child’s parents plus a copy of the parent’s National ID. If only one parent is Kenyan, the consent letter should be written and signed by the Kenyan parent.

We went to Nyayo House with all of the above and both of our kids – they must be present! We entered the gate, went to the right side of the building, passed through security and entered. We had to wait in a series of lines, first in the loooong line of people sitting in chairs, to the left of the entrance. Helpful tip – we talked to one of the security guards and explained that we had young children who were the applicants, and they let us jump the line!

Once we reached the window, we submitted all the documents to the agent. When the agent was satisfied that we had supplied all the required documentation, he told us to wait at another window to pay the fee of 4,500 KES per passport. Once we paid, they gave us a small photograph token receipt, and told us to wait in another area to have our children’s photos taken. (I do not know why you have to supply 3 passport photos, then proceed to have someone at Nyayo House take “official” photos.) After they took our kids’ photos, they gave us a receipt with a reference number, and we have used that to track our kids’ passport applications.

A few weeks have passed, so this week we returned to Nyayo House to collect the passports. Like I said, surprisingly straightforward! Hope this helps!

PS – This is the current process as of July 2014. The process may have changed since the time of writing. Please check the Kenyan Department of Immigration website for updates! The website seems to be down these days, but hopefully the link will work again soon!

PPS – If your children were born outside Kenya (as Claire was), then you must first get their original birth certificate (from the country in which they were born) registered with the Kenyan government. This is done at Hass Plaza on Lower Hill Road (or it was, when we did it in 2014!). The office will expect to keep the original birth certificate you supply, so we ordered certified duplicates from the UK, as I was not willing to surrender Claire’s only original UK birth certificate.

PPPS – Just adding a note for readers who find this page via Google search. I am not an immigration offical, and unfortunately I cannot help you with visa questions, passport processing, or in any other way assist with queries regarding the Kenya Department of Immigration. This is simply a blog post about my own experience getting a Kenyan passport for our daughter. I hope it helps! :)

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27 Responses to How to: Getting a Kenyan passport for your child

  1. Kate Otega says:

    Hey Mama Mgeni 🙂
    Interesting and informative. For your daughter who was born in the UK, did you use her UK birth certificate for the application?

    • MamaMgeni says:

      Hi Kate! Glad you asked – we actually had to register her overseas birth and get her a Kenyan birth certificate. I will edit the post to include that process as well, when I get a chance!

  2. Kate Otega says:

    Thanks a million. This is really useful. Been procrastinating… 🙂

  3. Anne Taylor says:

    Hey mama mgeni,
    This is quite informative. Thanks
    Did you get a UK passport to travel to Kenya or how did you travel with Claire? Just curious as I’m planning to travel with our four month baby to Kenya and apply her passport from there. I will appreciate your reply.
    Thanks.
    Anne Taylor.

    • Mama Mgeni says:

      We got Claire’s US passport before we left the UK, so we entered Kenya using that one!

      • Eunice says:

        Hi, my son has swedish passport. Do I have to buy a visa for him?

        • Mama Mgeni says:

          Hi Eunice – Sorry, I am not a Kenyan government official, nor am I a specialist on Kenyan immigration. I’m just a mom who wrote about her experience getting a passport for her child… Good luck!

        • Lora by Lora says:

          Hi Eunice,

          Yes you will have to pay 50$ for a visa at arrival. My son has an Italian Passport an last time we were in Kenya, this past Christmas I had to ask for visa on arrival.

          Thank you mama mgeni for this info. Planning to get our son a Kenyan passport and birth certificate and never knew where to start exactly.

  4. Anne Taylor says:

    Thanks mama Mgeni for your reply!

  5. Mama Shamim says:

    Thanks mama mgeni, i am on a very looong queue right know, i also want to get my daughter a kenyan passport

  6. Zarra khan says:

    Hi my husband is a British citizen and am a kenyan, we are married for 5years and we want to move to UK what do I need to register my children and me?

    • Mama Mgeni says:

      Sorry, Zarra, I’m not an immigration specialist! You’ll have to contact the British High Commission to find out. Good luck!

  7. Anjana Pindoria says:

    Hey..thanks for a such an informative post. Wanted to ask if you certified the copies of the national ids and birth certs.

    • Mama Mgeni says:

      If I remember correctly, the only things that we needed to have certified were one of the passport photos and the copy of the recommender’s national ID. Good luck!

      • Anjana Pindoria says:

        Thanks dear. Another question. Did they retain any of the original documents?

        • Mama Mgeni says:

          With the exception of my daughter’s UK birth certificate, which we had to submit to get a Kenyan birth certificate (we used an official copy), they didn’t keep any of the documents we submitted for the passport application.

  8. Rehab says:

    Hi

    Kindly I want to know How much time have you been waiting to get the Kenyan passport for your kids?

    Regards

    • Mama Mgeni says:

      I *think* it was 2 weeks, but I don’t remember exactly. They definitely told us at Nyayo House exactly when to come back, so they should be able to tell you processing times. Good luck!

  9. Carol Mugure says:

    Hi, How do I write the consent letter? am stuck at this point, everything else except for original copies of the daddy who lives abroad are missing.
    What do i write?

    • Carol Mugure says:

      I meant i have everything else 🙂

    • Mama Mgeni says:

      We just drafted a simple letter that read something like this:
      “To whom it may concern:
      I, (YOUR NAME HERE), hereby consent to the application for a Kenyan passport for my son / daughter, (YOUR CHILD’S NAME HERE).
      Sincerely, (SIGN HERE)”
      I hope that helps!

  10. Kibui says:

    Hello!!!

    Thanks for the information. I am going to apply for my daughter’s passport this week!! It is now done using e-citizen now. I also understand that you leave the original birth certificate of the applicant and collect it once the passport is ready.

  11. Daniel Chumba says:

    My son was born in the US with American mother living in Kenya and now he is 9 months. He has an American passport. His visa expired on 6th of March this year. We are planning to get him a Kenyan birth certificate. Can you advise

    • Mama Mgeni says:

      Hi Daniel, let me refer you to the post scripts in the post above:
      “PS – This is the current process as of July 2014. The process may have changed since the time of writing. Please check the Kenyan Department of Immigration website for updates! The website seems to be down these days, but hopefully the link will work again soon!

      PPS – If your children were born outside Kenya (as Claire was), then you must first get their original birth certificate (from the country in which they were born) registered with the Kenyan government. This is done at Hass Plaza on Lower Hill Road (or it was, when we did it in 2014!). The office will expect to keep the original birth certificate you supply, so we ordered certified duplicates from the UK, as I was not willing to surrender Claire’s only original UK birth certificate.

      PPPS – Just adding a note for readers who find this page via Google search. I am not an immigration offical, and unfortunately I cannot help you with visa questions, passport processing, or in any other way assist with queries regarding the Kenya Department of Immigration. This is simply a blog post about my own experience getting a Kenyan passport for our daughter. “

  12. Daniel Chumba says:

    Thanks a lot. Heading there today with all the documents. God bless you.

Comments are closed.