Help: Cash, ATM & Taxi at Nairobi

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Sep 2nd, 2005, 06:13 AM
  #1
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Help: Cash, ATM & Taxi at Nairobi

Have a few question for the upcoming trip.

1. Is there ATM at the airport to get cash? Is the ATM 24 hours?

2. Is there other cash exchange service if there is no ATM? What about their hours?

3. Is there an easy and safe way to get a taxi to the hotel (Kenya Comfort Hotel http://www.kenyacomfort.com/docs/kch.htm)? How much will it cost? Will the driver take dollar if we can't get local currency?

Thanks!
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Sep 2nd, 2005, 06:42 AM
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cheerful,
NBO is a big airport--I haven't used one, but there MUST be an ATM there. If so, it will most likely be 24 hours, although I suppose it could be out of service when you arrive.

There are money changers where you come out and get your luggage. We arrived in the morning, so they were open.

What time does your flight get in? Have you thought about having GAP arrange transport from the airport to your hotel? There are definitely taxis, though. Again, we were picked up by our guide, so I can't say the price.

If no one has answers here, consider posting these questions on the Lonely Planet's Thorn Tree.

I know you're a bit nervous, but you're going to have a great time! I'm excited for you.

If you can squeeze it in, try to make a visit to the Sheldrick Elephant/Rhino Sanctuary while in Nairobi. It's great.
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Sep 2nd, 2005, 06:48 AM
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1. I know there's at least one ATM at Nairobi airport. However, my Citibank ATM card didn't work there. There might have been more than one, but it was late and I was tired so didn't try looking around for another one.

2. There are cash exchange bureaus at the airport as well. I didn't use one but they were open for our late arriving flight. I ended up getting cash the following day from a Barclay's ATM in town, but we had a pre-arranged transfer so I didn't need schillings right away.

3. It's probably fine to pick up a taxi at the airport, but I don't know if they take USD. Can you arrange a transfer through your tour organizer? Or maybe contact your hotel? I know our hotel (Hilton) offered an airport shuttle. I believe the cost was around $10pp.
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Sep 2nd, 2005, 07:04 AM
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Hi Cheerful, when I arrive at 8 PM some of the passengers always make at stop at the ATM and the exchange office.

There are always taxis waiting outside the airport and the price for going to the city centre is 1,200 shillings, though some people bargain it down to 1,000 shillings. You’ll have no problem getting local currency, but anyway it seems very unlikely that a taxi driver would refuse to accept dollars.


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Sep 2nd, 2005, 02:06 PM
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sandi
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I've never used an ATM in Nairobi, but the Currency Exchange at the Baggage Claim is supposed to be opened 24/7. You shouldn't have any problem obtaining local currency when you arrive.

If you take a local taxi - though you should try to have your tour operator or hotel arrange for you to get into NBO - they'll probably take USD.
 
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Sep 2nd, 2005, 02:31 PM
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I had no trouble getting money out of the ATM with my Credit Union debit card. I'm pretty sure it was a 24 hour ATM.
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Sep 2nd, 2005, 02:43 PM
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Hello,

I'd make sure that you bring credit cards with access to PLUS, Cirrus, Maestro and as many of the multi-bank networks as possible. There was one time where I couldn't access on account because it was PLUS and the ATM was Cirrus (fortunately I had another card on me which was part of the Cirrus network).

Alternatively, buy a little amount of local cash or withdraw some small-denomination US bills before you go. True, the exchange rate isn't great, but it will take care of the first couple of hours which can be more important when you are jet-lagged, tired, cranky from being stuck on a plane all day, and have just arrived in the mdidle of the night in a foreign country.

Cheers,
Julian
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Sep 7th, 2005, 06:19 AM
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Thanks for the advices.

GAP charges $50 per person for airport transport. We will contact the hotel to see if they can arrange anything for a reasonable price.

Patty, how do you like the range of your S1? I am wondering if I should buy an extender to boost the reach to 700mm.

Thanks!
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Sep 7th, 2005, 09:17 AM
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I was happy with the range of my S1, but I'm not much of a photographer so don't know if you should be taking my advice

Now you have me curious. What's an extender and how does it affect the image quality?
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Sep 7th, 2005, 11:31 AM
  #10
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Me niether.

A lot of people call extender lens as well. It is an addon that you add to the front of the bulti-in lens and extend the reach. They are measured by a multiplier like 1.7X. Of course the quality is not as good as the built-on lens or SLR lens. But some extender was built pretty well.

Were you able to get any close-up shots?
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Sep 7th, 2005, 12:30 PM
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Here's my trip report thread from earlier this year -

http://www.fodors.com/forums/threads...4&tid=34566072

At the end of the report are links to my albums. All of the photos were taken with the S1. I believe you have the S2 which has a bit more zoom capability, right?

We also brought a camcorder with 22x optical zoom, so whatever couldn't be captured close enough with the camera was captured on video.
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Sep 7th, 2005, 01:02 PM
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Patty-great pictures. I have the canon s1 also and was thinking about the extender, but after seeing your pictures, don't think i need it...just one less thing to have to learn and worry about.
Dennis
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Sep 7th, 2005, 01:04 PM
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bwanamitch
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Dennis - didn't you say you want TO BUY A NEW CAMERA?
 
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Sep 7th, 2005, 01:12 PM
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Thanks, Dennis. Hope you have a great trip!
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Sep 7th, 2005, 01:27 PM
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Bwana-Yes but I am convincing myself not to do it! have to save some money for next years trip to Africa! (but i still have 41 days to go, so who knows what i might find on ebay or amazon...)
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Sep 7th, 2005, 01:47 PM
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Dennis,
If you take mediocre pictures you will then certainly have to return.

So, don't get another camera...

cheerful,
Will you post when you return and let us all know about your trip? I'm really curious to see if there is electricity at the campsites.
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Sep 7th, 2005, 02:01 PM
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thanks leely! I will heed your advice.
Dennis
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Sep 7th, 2005, 04:58 PM
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Hi, Patty,

I was unable to view your ablums. I got an error message. Am I missing some thing?

As for the lens, one place sell things like that is

http://www.lensmateonline.com/buy5.html

However, I only saw wide angle adapter for S1.


---------

"Album Not Found

We're sorry, but the online album you're looking for is unavailable. The owner may have deleted the album after sharing it with you, or the link you used may be incorrect.

To view the album, please contact the person who originally shared the album with you and ask them to share it again."
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Sep 7th, 2005, 05:18 PM
  #19
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I think I had a browser glitch. Once I pasted the link properly, it is working. Great pictures!
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