In parts I and II of this series, I told you about traveling between Nairobi and Kampala using both Akamba and Scandinavia. In this last post, I’ll tell you about Regional, another bus company that serves this route. In my opinion, Akamba and Scandinavia are by far the superior services. Sometimes, though, when these service providers are fully booked or when the service they provide simply doesn’t meet your need, Regional is a third option to be considered.
Before I tell you anything else about Regional, allow me to share an experience that I had while traveling on it back in October 2004. On the fateful night in question, on my way back from Kampala to Nairobi with a group of friends, the bus I was traveling on was involved in an accident. In the spirit of careless driving and over-speeding, the Regional bus I was traveling on tried to overtake a lorry at a corner. The bus came too close to the lorry, and as a result, overturned and landed in a ravine, on its side. To the best of my knowledge, the accident had no fatalities, though I know several people who were traveling that night that suffered extensive physical injuries. I wish I could tell you that this was a fluke accident and a case to be ignored. Unfortunately, I have heard of at least two other major road accidents that have involved Regional, the other two with a significantly larger numbers of casualties.
Off the bat, I have let you know that Regional is not a very safe means of travel. Why then do I even bother to bring it up? Mostly, it’s because if you do manage to travel safely on Regional, then it is comfortable, well-priced, and a timely bus service. Even after the accident, when I promised that I would never travel with Regional again, I found myself traveling with Regional a few months later because it was the only bus service that could get me into Kampala on a Saturday morning in time to attend a cousin’s wedding function. When Regional gives you an expected time of arrival, it normally adheres to it. This is a quality that that can be appreciated by many a traveler.
In terms of comfort and price, Regional lies almost perfectly between Akamba and Scandinavia in both aspects. Regional is more expensive than Akamba’s executive service (or was at least the last time I traveled on it), yet is less expensive than Scandinavia. Also, in terms of comfort, Regional is more comfortable than Akamba and almost as comfortable as Scandinavia.
I haven’t used Regional in the last 2 years, though I have been to their offices in the past few months to inquire about their services. At that time, they still had buses that left Nairobi in the morning as well as at night. Unfortunately, I am unable to tell you the precise times when these buses depart from Nairobi. For more information, you can visit the Regional offices, which are located on River Road, near the Fire Station roundabout, close to Scandinavia.
There you have it. Akamba, Scandinavia, and Regional are all good bus companies that serve the Nairobi-Kampala route (and vice versa). Each bus service has its strengths and weaknesses. I hope this series helps you make a decision about the bus service that best suits your needs and fulfills your purpose of travel. If you have any questions or comments that you would like to direct my way, please drop me a comment. If you are planning on making this journey soon, I wish you a comfortable, safe, and enjoyable trip.