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Nairobi Salary and expenses question

Nairobi Salary and expenses question

Old Jun 9th 2020, 10:29 am
  #1  
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Default Nairobi Salary and expenses question

Doing some initial research for a potential move to Kenya to be Based in Nairobi, been there on holiday a few times (we are aware its different when your on holiday vs. live in a city). We are an expat family based in Muscat we both work and 1 kid under the age of 5. What's the taxation in Kenya like? Does everyone come under PAYE

What would it cost to rent a house with an enclosed garden in Karen or Spring valley 3-4 Bedrooms? in USD
What are the school fees, for a school that follows the UK curriculum (Rated top 3 in Nairobi) with sports and other activities
Cost of cars a 4x4 that we can use for game drives as well? and a mid sized car for city running, do expats lease or buy?
Cost of staff, a house keeper and driver and night watchman?
What are the costs for Utilities (Electricity, gas, broadband, mobile phones)
Also cost of health clubs/gyms? (mid range)
Also the cost of any sports or social clubs like a golf club?
Assuming the company will provide health insurance and return flights back to London

Anyone who has moved in the last few years would really like to get your opinion, are you enjoying it? what are the challenges, what's worked well

Thanks

ER


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Old Jun 9th 2020, 4:45 pm
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Default Re: Nairobi Salary and expenses question

Work permit ? Visa ? Your first obstacle is to ensure that you can legally go there and live. Do you have a job offer in Kenya ?

https://shieldgeo.com/work-permits-v...workers-kenya/
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Old Jun 9th 2020, 5:29 pm
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Default Re: Nairobi Salary and expenses question

If you're being sent there by your employer, most of the things you're asking about - housing, schools, domestic staff, flights home, vehicles, etc. should be negotiated as part of your package.
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Old Jun 9th 2020, 10:39 pm
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Default Re: Nairobi Salary and expenses question

I think the main issue here is the sort of package expected in the GCC vs Kenya.

I, personally, like Nairobi but it's not for everyone and can be really dangerous. I remember last time I was there - I was in the hotel lobby, someone called the front desk and asked about security and the receptionist said (direct quote) "come on, it's Nairobi." Don't underestimate the security package. You shouldn't just have a car, you should also have a driver. Al-shabab and all sorts of African terror groups are active in Nairobi, or have moved key people there, as it's an easier base than being in Mogadishu. The city is full-on.

The package for Kenya should be more generous than the package for Oman.
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Old Jun 9th 2020, 10:56 pm
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Default Re: Nairobi Salary and expenses question

"The Happy Valley" of Colonial Kenya is long gone. Mind you that was The Aberdares, not Nairobi. Kenya is as dangerous as South Africa and can be a real shock to those used to the more peaceful cities of The GCC.

Here is an extract from current FCO Advice - "You must carry a form of ID with you at all times. A copy of your passport is normally acceptable, but recently some police officers have been insisting on the original document.

Terrorists are very likely to try to carry out attacks in Kenya. There is a heightened threat of terrorism, including terrorist kidnappings, across Kenya. Attacks, including terrorist kidnappings, could target Westerners, including British nationals. Attacks could occur at any time, including around religious or public holidays. Attacks could be indiscriminate in places frequented by foreigners including hotels, bars, restaurants, sports bars and nightclubs, sporting events, supermarkets, shopping centres, commercial buildings, coastal areas including beaches, government buildings, airports, buses, trains and other transport hubs. Places of worship including churches and mosques have also been targeted. Be particularly vigilant in these areas.

There are frequent incidents of violent crime including mugging, armed robbery and carjacking, particularly in the large cities."

Last edited by scot47; Jun 9th 2020 at 11:04 pm.
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Old Jun 10th 2020, 11:04 am
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Default Re: Nairobi Salary and expenses question

Hi All, thanks for your replies so far, we are aware of the security challenges and also there are other issues. I have lived in war time Sri Lanka as well so aware of some of the issues that come with terrorism and spent 6 months in Tunisia after 2011, I don't have a job offer as of yet but to start negotiating what would a good salary be is 150,000 USD a good point to start, in financial services as a senior manager. Thanks

ER
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Old Jun 10th 2020, 5:31 pm
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Default Re: Nairobi Salary and expenses question

Originally Posted by eastrunner View Post
Hi All, thanks for your replies so far, we are aware of the security challenges and also there are other issues. I have lived in war time Sri Lanka as well so aware of some of the issues that come with terrorism and spent 6 months in Tunisia after 2011, I don't have a job offer as of yet but to start negotiating what would a good salary be is 150,000 USD a good point to start, in financial services as a senior manager. Thanks

ER
I am not sure that anyone on BE would have experitise in such a matter, and when relocating to a location such as Kenya, I would say that the answer is goiung to be very personal - what figure do you need to make it worth your while to go their to work? Would Glassdoor have any relevant information, or LinkedIn?

I have long had a figure at the back of my mind, as to what it would take to persuade me to go back to NYC, or go to Boston or San Franciso, in the event that anyone were to offer me a(n unsolicited) position there, and while it might vary a little on how much I wanted the job, and the number I have in mind isn't "off the chart", it is a big enough number to compensate me and my family for the inconveniences of working in one of those cities.

FWIW Personally, $150k to move to Kenya would be at the very lowest end of what I would consider even if all the other things you listed, were paid for by my employer., but that's just me and perhaps not you.
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Old Jun 10th 2020, 9:35 pm
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Default Re: Nairobi Salary and expenses question

I've worked in Tunisia post-2011, the Subcontinent (not Sri Lanka) and the GCC.

The security situation in Nairobi is not comparable to Tunisia or the Subcontinent. Tunisia isn't a problem at all. You have to keep your ears to the ground there but really that's about it. The differentiation point is that Kenya has a massive violent crime problem and an unpredictability to it. I think this is part of the "shock" scot47 speaks of. The reason the package needs to be substantially more than the GCC is to take into account the quality of life hit you are going to take, and all of the major security considerations, the two of course being linked. Do you know how to vary your route to work and select a villa with multiple long-distance exit points out of the neighbourhood etc. Mombasa is much more manageable, has more development due to tourism and is a lot safer, but I doubt your company has an office there.

I am taking from your posts that your company hasn't offered a transfer, you are mostly kicking the tyres on Africa because you think it will be interesting. Does the company have an office in Addis Ababa? That city is much gentler than Nairobi and also has a lot fewer problems. Dar es Salaam is also a better bet.

Don't overlook West Africa if that could be an option. Accra is not bad.

Look, I'm sure you will be fine, just eyes wide open about the challenges in Nairobi, which in my view far exceed those in the Subcontinent or North Africa.

Good luck.

Last edited by carcajou; Jun 10th 2020 at 9:38 pm.
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Old Jun 20th 2020, 7:22 pm
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Default Re: Nairobi Salary and expenses question

I know an expat couple in Nairobi (German/S African) and visited them in December - my first visit to Kenya.
Although I never felt nervous or threatened, the sheer scale of the poverty all around leaves no doubt that crime will be rife and yes, quite likely violent. Why not? Any place/home/premises of any value is fenced/walled/patrolled up the yin-yang. And everything in the city seems to be decrepit, dirty and barely hanging together. The road surfaces (and the traffic) are the worst I've ever seen, anywhere.
Having said that, the people are smiling and friendly and the expats seem to enjoy themselves - there is a large Western community. Obviously, being well paid will play a large role in that. Rentals are high, security is expensive, cars are extremely expensive and health-care is extortionate - get it covered by your employer. But the climate is great and the scenery can be spectacular. I enjoyed the trip.
Having said THAT, a few weeks later my friends called, quite upset. He had been kidnapped at gunpoint, in the middle of the day, from his business premises and forced to empty their bank account from an ATM. Thank goodness for daily withdrawal limits! And he was unharmed, phew! Then it emerged quite early in the investigation that the perps were off-duty policemen! The wheels of justice have slowed considerably from that point onwards, despite several witnesses...
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