Duty-Free Importation of Right-Hand Drive Vehicles for Returning Residents in Kenya

Duty-Free Importation of Right-Hand Drive Vehicles for Returning Residents in Kenya

Duty-Free Importation of Right-Hand Drive Vehicles for Returning Residents in Kenya

In 2014, the Kenyan government implemented a policy permitting returning residents to import right-hand drive (RHD) vehicles duty-free. The key objective behind this policy is to aid residents transitioning from left-hand drive (LHD) countries, such as the USA, by facilitating the importation of appropriate vehicles that suit the Kenyan driving standards.

At CarLuv UK, we understand the challenges faced by returning residents in Kenya who are transitioning from left-hand drive (LHD) countries. One major concern is the compatibility of their vehicles with Kenya’s right-hand drive (RHD) standards. In a bid to assist these residents, the Kenyan government has implemented a policy allowing duty-free importation of RHD vehicles. In this article, we will explore the qualifications, requirements, and benefits of this policy, and highlight how CarLuv UK can make the vehicle sourcing, exporting to Kenya and delivery up to Nairobi seamless for returning residents.

Discover how returning residents in Kenya can import duty-free right-hand drive vehicles from countries that offer them, paving the way for a seamless transition from left-hand drive countries like the USA. Understand the qualifications, requirements, and benefits of this Kenyan government policy.

Qualifications and Requirements

To be eligible for duty-free importation of RHD vehicles in Kenya, returning residents must meet certain qualifications. These include:

  1. Residency in an LHD country: Returning residents should have resided in an LHD country, such as the USA, for a minimum of two years. This requirement establishes the validity of their need to import an RHD vehicle.
  2. Ownership and usage of a vehicle: Returning residents should have owned and used a vehicle in the LHD country for at least one year. This condition ensures that the imported vehicles are not for commercial purposes, but for personal use by the residents themselves.
  3. Ownership duration: The vehicle to be imported must have been owned for at least twelve months prior to importing it into Kenya. This duration establishes the authenticity of the ownership and usage in the LHD country.

Benefits of Duty-Free Importation

The duty-free importation policy provides several advantages for returning residents:

  1. Compatibility with Kenyan driving standards: By importing RHD vehicles, returning residents can seamlessly adapt to the country’s roads and driving practices, enhancing their safety and comfort.
  2. Familiarity and convenience: Having a vehicle they are already familiar with ensures a smoother transition for returning residents and reduces the need to adjust to unfamiliar controls and driving positions.
  3. Cost-saving opportunity: Importing duty-free vehicles removes the burden of import duties, making the process more affordable for returning residents. They can allocate their financial resources to other important aspects of resettlement.

How CarLuv UK Can Help

At CarLuv UK, we specialise in sourcing and shipping high-quality RHD vehicles to Kenya. Our services are tailored to meet the needs of returning residents seeking duty-free importation. Here’s how we can assist you:

  1. Vehicle sourcing: Our experienced team will help you find the perfect right-hand drive vehicle in countries where they are readily available, ensuring compliance with Kenyan driving standards.
  2. Vehicle inspection: Before shipping the vehicle, we conduct thorough inspections to verify its quality and condition. We take pride in delivering vehicles that meet high standards of safety and performance.
  3. Shipping logistics: CarLuv UK handles every aspect of the importation process, including paperwork, customs clearance, and transportation arrangements. We strive to make the entire process hassle-free for our clients.
  4. Expert guidance: Our knowledgeable team provides professional advice and guidance throughout the importation journey. We are committed to ensuring your satisfaction and a seamless experience.


    Here are some frequently asked questions related to the duty-free importation policy:

    • Are left-hand drive vehicles allowed in Kenya?
      • Left-hand drive vehicles are generally not allowed for registration in Kenya unless they are for special purposes, like ambulances and fire engines.
    • Who is exempted from import duty in Kenya?
      • Diplomats, returning residents who meet the above-discussed criteria, and public benefit organisations are among those exempted from import duty in Kenya.
    • What is the Kenyan law on car importation?
      • Kenya’s importation laws allow for vehicles that are less than 8 years old from their date of manufacture and have a right-hand drive orientation.
    • Can a resident ship a car from the USA to Kenya?
      • Yes, a resident can ship a car from the USA to Kenya. However, the vehicle must comply with Kenyan import regulations, and if the vehicle is LHD, it may not be registered for regular use.
    • Can duty-free cars be sold in Kenya?
      • Yes, but only after a stipulated period, which is usually 12 months after importation.

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