If you have a car in Nairobi, you should definitely use the Nairobi Expressway(Some call it the Nairobi Expressway highway). In this article, I will be telling you about the Nairobi expressway, what you need to know about it, the exits, charges and how to use it to your advantage.
Introduction: Thinking Behind The Nairobi Expressway Highway,
Thinking Behind The Nairobi Expressway Highway
If you live in Nairobi, or you have passed through Kenya’s capital city, then you know how Traffic jam is a menace in this city. Our Kenyan economy has been growing steadily year by year, and therefore the need for goods and service delivery in all parts of the country. This growing economy has also made it possible for more and more Kenyans to purchase personal vehicles, therefore increasing the amount of traffic on Kenyan roads, especially in Nairobi.
Now, as good as this is, a study by the Institute of Economic Affairs in 2019(IEA,2019) showed that as a country, we lose up to 50 million daily due to traffic jams, this is due to the time and fuel wasted in traffic jams.
DID YOU KNOW THAT THE DISTANCE THROUGH NAIROBI IS ONLY 27KM? BUT IT TAKES MOTORISTS BETWEEN 1-2 HOURS TO GET THROUGH.
To try and fight this, the Kenyan government made a partnership with China CRBC to make the Nairobi Express Way in a move to curb and reduce traffic jams in Nairobi. This Nairobi Expressway was projected to reduce the time one would take to move through Nairobi during rush hours to just 20 mins. The Expressway also has created jobs for the construction and implementation of the Government project.
Nairobi Expressway Map – Nairobi Expressway Exits
The Nairobi Expressway runs as a dual carriage along the Nairobi A8 road running all the way from Mlolongo and ending at James Gichuru road junction. this is a relief for those travelling to Mombasa or from Nakuru as it connects the Nairobi to Mombasa highway and the Nairobi Malaba highway sections of the A8 road.
The Nairobi expressway has 11 interchanges at various points of the express highway to ensure smooth exit and entry as you move about on your journey. Below is a list of the interchanges and the point at which they are found:
- Mlolongo Interchange
- SGR interchange
- JKIA Interchange
- Eastern bypass interchange
- Southern Bypass Interchange
- Capital Center Interchange
- Haile Sellasie Interchange
- Tika Road Interchange
- Westland Interchange
- James Gichuru Interchange
Nairobi Expressway Speed Limit
The Nairobi expressway has a strict restriction on the speed limit to be used by motor vehicles using the highway. When using the Nairobi Expressway, a motorist is not supposed to exceed a speed of 80km/hr. Any vehicle found exceeding this limit will face the necessary traffic disciplinary action. Please note that you are not exempted from standard traffic rules when using this expressway.
Who can use the Nairobi Express Highway?
To ensure that the Nairobi Expressway is efficient enough for the fast passage of motor vehicles, the following are not allowed along the route;
- People walking on foot(Pedistrians)
- Handcarts and trolleys
- Motobikes(Boda Bodas)
How To Register And Start Using The Nairobi Expressway Highway
How It Works
Before I tell you how you register, let me give you a brief summary of how it works. After registration, which I will take you through later, users have 2 options they can choose and use for payment when using the expressway; An ETC system or an MTC system.
ETC System Users
This is a short abbreviation for Electronic Toll Collection. As the name states, this system is done electronically. An OBU(On Board Unit) device is installed on the user’s car during registration. When the user approaches the Toll station, the system automatically detects the car by communicating with the OBU device and the traffic barrier is lifted, allowing the car to pass.
All this is done wirelessly, and as you can see, this makes the travel smooth with no interruptions along the way. The toll fee is deducted automatically when the care approaches, meaning the account has to be credited with the Toll Points in advance. If not, the car will not be allowed to go through.
An advantage of this is that you will save plenty of time and fuel unlike the MTC system as you will see below.
MTC System Users
MTC stands for Manual Toll Collection. In this case, you have to stop and the entry and exit Toll points unlike in the ETC system. There is an automatic voucher issuing machine at the entrance that gives you the required voucher. Ensure that you keep this voucher safe as it will be used at the exit point for paying and exiting one toll point to another.
The traffic barrier is then lifted so that you can pass. On the exit, you will meet the toll collector, who will scan your voucher and collect your toll fee payment. Payment can either be made in cash or using an MTC card. Funds are credited in advance before you use the MTC card.
The MTC card has advantages such as cashless transactions and is more time-saving than paying for cash. Look at the registration section to see how you can get the MTC card or become an ETC user
How To Register For The Nairobi Expressway
How To Register as an ETC Account
To register as an ETC user, you will have to present yourself to the Nairobi Expressway Plaza located along Mombasa road with the following required documents:
- Your Car’s Original Log Book.
- Your National ID. You will have to carry a copy of the ID and the Original ID card
Nairobi Expressway ETC Top Up
For now, the only way to top up your ETC account is through the Nairobi expressway website, or at the Moja Expressway company location along Mombasa Road. They have promised to roll out more payment options in the near future to make it easier for their users
How To Register an MTC User
Same as the ETC users, an MTC user will have to visit the Nairobi Expressway Plaza only with their Original ID and a copy of the same ID. You will then be issued the MTC card to use at various Toll points. Remember that you have to add money to your card in order for you to use it.
How To Top Up MTC Account
For now, the only way to top up your MTC card is by accessing the Nairobi expressway website using your smartphone or laptop, or at the Moja Expressway company location along Mombasa Road. They have promised to roll out more payment options in the near future to make it easier for their users
How To Use The Nairobi Expressway Highway
When approaching a toll point, select which lane you had registered for your Toll charges payment method. In other words, if you are using the ETC lane, change to the ETC lane, and when using the MTC method of paying cash, use the MTC lane.
For ETC Users
To use the Nairobi Expressway as an ETC user:
- As you approach the Toll Point, reduce your speed to below 20km/hr.
- Your OBU will be detected automatically and the Toll barrier lifted. The traffic light will also turn green.
- The Toll Payment will be deducted automatically.
For MTC Users
For MTC users;
- Approach the Toll Point and reduce your speed to 5km/hr using the MTC Lane.
- Stop near the Automatic Voucher issuing machine.
- Press the green button to receive the voucher receipt.
- Continue when the barrier is lifted.
- When you reach the toll collector, give them the voucher you received, who will scan your voucher to determine your expressway charges. You can either pay in cash or use an MTC card if you have one.
Nairobi Expressway Charges
Using this expressway is not free and customers will be required to pay Toll Charges in order to travel from one interchange to the other. The toll charges for using the Nairobi Expressway vary from one Tollbooth to another and range between Kes.100 – 360. These charges do not apply to the following vehicles:
- Police vehicles
- Fire Engine trucks
- Military vehicles
If this image looks confusing to the eye, don’t worry, read my article where I break down the Toll rates for motor vehicles using the Expressway highway as of 2023.
Nairobi Expressway Contacts
In case you are in need of any assistance, feel free to contact Moja Expressway Company, who are managing the Nairobi Expressway through the following channels:
Moja Expressway Company Physical Location:
You can visit the Moja Expressway company physically at their offices located at Nairobi Expressway Plaza, City Cabanas on Mombasa Road.
Write them an Email with your enquiry
You can also send them an email via their email, [email protected]
Call Moja Expressway Company for assistance
You can get them either by using their Hotline or calling their Rescue hotline.
Hotline Number: 0111039777
Rescue Hotline: 0111039888