Cultural Shocks for people traveling to Kenya


When you visit Kenya there are many cultural shocks you will encounter. Many Africans and Europeans who have visited Kenya have met the following cultural shocks.

Matatu Culture

The public transport is dominated by the matatu which have a specific culture. In other countries, the public transport has normal vehicles which ferry passengers without music and any decorations, but in Kenya, the Matatu have a different experience. They are equipped with complete music system. Most of them have beautiful graffiti. The owners spend over $10,000 to put the music system and decorate with graffiti.

When you enter those matatu, the music itself is soothing, giving you a unique experience.


Mpesa is the mobile payment system in Kenya. You will be surprised that immediately you land in Kenya every transaction is done through Mpesa.The system is so strong that the economy is almost cashless. It’s difficult to find someone carrying huge notes of money.


The food in Kenya is ugali, chapati, rice, fish and tea. Nearly every home eats Ugali at least ones a day.

There are restaurants that sell Kenyan food, Indian food, Chinese food and all types of food you’d want to buy.


There are over 45 languages and ethnicity in Kenya. The country accommodates people from all walks of lives. You will find Indians, Somalia, Europeans, Nigerians, South Sudanese and people from every country in the world.

Sheng language

There is also a unique language called Sheng. This one is a mixture of Kiswahili and other terms originating from the street and Nairobi Estates. Even if you are from a Swahili speaking nation, you’ll get confused after hearing speak Sheng. You’ll have to live in Kenya for a long period for you to get used to the language and understand some words.

Rent payment

Rent payment is monthly. When you book a house, you will be required to pay a deposit of 1 month rent, deposit for water and electricity. Then pay the rent for that first month. If rent per month is $200, water and electricity is $50, you will pay $450 when booking a house. From the second month, you will be paying normal rent of $200 monthly.

If you want to relocate to another house, give a one-month notice and request for the deposit you paid. They will visit your house and assess the damages before paying you the deposit. If there are damages, they will subtract from the deposit and pay you the balance.


Kenya’s internet is one of the fastest in the world. This is one thing you will be shocked about.

Nairobi National Park

Another thing that will shock you is the Nairobi National Park which is in the heart of Nairobi. This is the only city with a National Park within.


Nairobi is a beautiful city; it’s called a “green city”. There are trees all over, in estates and within the CBD.You will love the beauty of Nairobi.

Nairobi people are quiet; they walk so fast

In Nairobi, people walk very fast even inside their streets you may not keep up with their walking speed. This culture of walking helps them keep fit. More than 50% of the people in Nairobi are physically fit—yet they don’t go to the gym.

Nairobi residents are welcoming

The reason why there are many tribes and people of different races in Kenya is because Kenyans are welcoming. You will easily settle in Kenya because there is no discrimination.


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