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Travel firm Kuoni temporarily halts trips to Mombasa

Kuoni has temporarily suspended trips to Mombasa in the wake of the FCO’s upgraded travel advisory. The firm’s actions come as Thomson and First Choice evacuated around 500 holidaymakers and cancelled all flights to Mombasa until November. The FCO’s alert came ahead of bombings in Kenya’s capital Nairobi last Friday; an incident that is reportedly said to have been inspired by Somalia based terrorist group al-Shabaab. The attacks left at least ten people dead and 70 injured.

As well as advising all against all but essential travel to Mombasa island and within 5km of the coast from Mtwapa creek in the north down to and including Tiwi in the south (this area does not include Diani or Moi international airport), the FCO has also applied this warning to the following areas:

Areas within 60km of the Kenya-Somali border, Kiwayu and coastal areas north of Pate Island, Garissa Distric, the Eastleigh area of Nairobi, low income areas of Nairobi, including all township or slum areas. Commenting on its decision and advising customers on their next steps Kuoni said: “Although the advice does not include Moi international airport, Diani beach or Malindi, the main road to access these resorts goes through the restricted area defined by the FCO advice. This means that we are no longer able to offer holidays to the Kenyan coast at present. “Kuoni’s operations team will contact all customers who are due to travel in the next 14 days. This will continue on a rolling basis until the FCO advice changes.

“Any customers that are travelling from the UK within the next 14 days with an itinerary that includes the Kenyan coast are able to cancel free of charge or amend to an alternative destination with no administration fee but at the applicable cost. “For any customers who are travelling to other parts of Kenya on safari or staying in a lodge and don’t have Mombasa included in their itinerary, they will not be affected by the current FCO advice and holidays will continue as normal.”

Kenya Tourism Board managing director Muriithi Ndegwa added: “We are indeed disappointed by the FCO's decision to enforce this advice against non-essential travel to some areas of Mombasa. “We will work tirelessly with the British government to demonstrate the enhanced security in place to ensure the safety of British visitors.” If you are heading off an overseas holiday it is important to secure comprehensive travel insurance in advance.

Date Created: 20 May 2014

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