What is the best way to get to Kilimanjaro? Continue reading if you need to know what airport to book your arrival flights to for your Kilimanjaro climb and/or your Tanzanian safari.
Everyone’s flights are different, depending on where they live. Kilimanjaro International Airport is the best airport to fly into. JRO is the airport’s international code.
The airport is located southwest of Mount Kilimanjaro National Park. It lies roughly halfway between Arusha and Moshi.
Where do the Mount Kilimanjaro Climbs Begin?
We begin our climbs in Arusha, Tanzania. Other operators begin in Moshi. Most tour operators base themselves in one of these places. You can find good accommodations, restaurants, shops, and markets here.
Moshi is closer to the Kilimanjaro international airport (JRO), about 40 minutes by car (45 km). Arusha is about 70 kilometers (60 minutes) away.
The Best Way to Fly to JRO
It is easiest for climbers in the United States, Europe, and the United Kingdom to fly from a major local airport hub to Amsterdam (most major airports in the US, Europe, and the UK have flights to Amsterdam) and then catch KLM Airlines to JRO.
Another option is to fly American Airlines from most major hubs in the US then transfer to Qatar. From there it’ll be a long flight to Doha, Qatar, and then on to JRO.
Below we have listed airlines that fly directly to Kilimanjaro airport (JRO).
- KLM: Direct flights from Amsterdam to Kilimanjaro airport
- Condor Air: Direct flights from Frankfurt to Kilimanjaro airport
- Turkish Airlines: Direct flights from Istanbul to Kilimanjaro airport
- Kenya Airways: Direct flights from Nairobi to Kilimanjaro airport
- Precision Air: Direct flights from Nairobi to Kilimanjaro airport
- Qatar Airlines: Direct flights from Doha to Kilimanjaro airport
- Ethiopian Airlines: Direct flights from Addis Ababa to Kilimanjaro airport
- RwandAir: Direct flights from Kigali to Kilimanjaro airport
In case you cannot find direct flights to Kilimanjaro airport, you can fly to Dar Es Salaam or Nairobi (Kenya). Nairobi is much closer to Mount Kilimanjaro than Dar Es Salaam.
If you need a visual of the region, click on the interactive map below to see the major airports, safari parks, cities, and Kilimanjaro.
Domestic flights within Tanzania
The following airlines offer domestic flights within the Tanzania region:
- Precision Air
- Regional Air
- Zan Air
- Coastal Aviation
- Air Excel
Other Considerations For Tanzania Travel
- Please check your Visa & Passport requirements well in advance of your reservation, including any visa requirements for transit countries.
- Make sure you have all the recommended vaccinations. No vaccinations are necessary for Tanzania. However, if you spend more than eight hours in Kenya, a Yellow Fever vaccination is required.
- It is recommended that you arrive a few days before your climb. You will then be able to recover from your long flight and any flight or luggage delays.
- With prior arrangements, we will pick you up from JRO. There is a fee to do so. Or you can take a taxi to the hotel.
KILIMANJARO INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT
The Kilimanjaro Airport was opened in December 1971. The construction cost $13 million. The Italian government provided a long-term loan to finance the construction. The airport became Africa’s first private international airport when it was privatized in 1998. It is operated by the Kilimanjaro Airport Development Company.
Aside from climbers heading to Kilimanjaro, the airport is also used by those wishing to travel to one or more of Tanzania’s world-famous safari parks. These parks include the Ngorongoro Conservation Area, Arusha National Park, Tarangire National Park, Lake Manyara National Park, and Serengeti National Park.
The airport advertises itself as the “Gateway to Africa’s Wildlife Heritage”. In February 2014, the Tanzanian and Dutch governments signed a grant agreement to renovate JRO. Upgrades were made to the terminal building and taxiways. The project cost nearly $41 million USD.
One of the most notable contributions was $17 million from the Netherlands. The rest of the funds were provided by Tanzania. Construction of the airport began in November 2015. This improvement doubled the airport’s capacity.
JRO could handle 600,000 passengers annually before the upgrades. With the upgrades, the passenger capacity has been increased to 1.2 million people.
Arusha Airport (ARK)
Arusha has a small airport in the city. It has limited flights. However, if you are coming from a nearby country such as Nairobi, Kenya, or Zanzibar this may be an option for you. We will pick you up, but there will be a transfer fee. Additionally, you may take a taxi. We will need to know in advance if you arrive here since ARK to Arusha is approximately 40 minutes each way.
Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (NBO)
Furthermore, some clients choose to arrive in Nairobi, Kenya. From Nairobi, you can take a daily shuttle to Arusha. The ride is about 5 hours. We do not provide any transportation to or from Nairobi. Clients must arrange this transportation themselves. Keep in mind that if you are in Kenya for over eight hours you will be required to get a Yellow Fever vaccination before arriving in Africa. One of the benefits of traveling this route is you can get your visa fairly easily at the Tanzania border. There is usually only one line if there is one at all.
Clients can also book flights on a local, smaller airline like those listed above, to JRO or ARK.
EMERGENCY ISSUES EN ROUTE TO TANZANIA
If you have any problems on your way to Tanzania. You’ll need to contact us right away. Issues may include delayed or canceled flights, lost luggage, missed flights, or an accident on the way to the airport. Since Tanzania is 10-hours ahead of the main U.S. offices, contacting our Operations Manager via a text message through WhatsApp is the best and fastest way to reach us. You should program this number into WhatsApp: +255 754 400 141. This is our 24-hour emergency phone number.
Finally, we hope this helps you book your flights for your climb Kilimanjaro climb and/or safari. Remember, if you have any issues along the way, please do not hesitate to text us via WhatsApp. If your flight times change, please let us know. We will do our best to make sure your time in Tanzania is the best it can be.