Big and Bold: Safarini, Kenya’s first ever magazine for train passengers launched

Whether you are travelling by road, air, rail or on water, an inflight/ board magazine works as a rich resource of providing the outside world’s information through its various sections. It not only informs the traveler with different lifestyle stories with majority travel related thereby enriching them with some excellent information about destinations, the new initiatives of the carrier, new products launched by some major brands in the market, latest fashion trends, and entertainment.

It is for this need that Kenya railways has launched Kenya’s first ever magazine for train passengers, Safarini, on board the SGR’s Madaraka Express. The magazine, which is free, will be distributed to all passengers on board. Safarini magazine is all about changing perceptions. The saying goes “If you want to hide something from Africans, put it in a book.” With the introduction to SGRs on transit magazine, such statements will cease to exist.

Over the years, inflight / on transit magazines have evolved into true lifestyle publications. It’s not uncommon to see stories from top travel journalists or exposés on exotic cuisine. Safarini seeks to promote among other things, the country’s tourism sector.

Speaking at the launch, Mrs Hellen Wamuiga, a director at Kenya Railways, says the magazine was born out of the need to also promote the country’s reading culture. Noticing an idle, somber almost dull commute for some Kenyans, Ms. Wamuiga says Safarini comes with”an extra special sauce.” It is a way for Kenyans to escape, discover new destinations, shop or get lost in an article. It’s all part of creating an exciting adventure in their journey. The event was held at the beautiful Nairobi terminus station.

With an array of high quality well-articulated pieces, Safarini opens up the opportunity for journalists to openly express their talent. Local stores now have the chance to move their products globally and children remain mentally stimulated with interactive games. Publications are these are also unique because they cater to an audience that cannot escape them. So, in short, they have the ability to steal their readers attention.

Photo courtesy of Picha Duka (Mwangi Kirubi Image)

Since the launch of Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) train services, it has become a significant component of the country’s overall infrastructure revitalization and transformation. The Madaraka Express, which operates four trains daily between Nairobi and the port city of Mombasa, ferried 1.7 million passengers in 2018. The figure is more than double the passengers the train service, dubbed Madaraka Express, carried from mid-2017, when it started, till the end of 2017, the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics (KNBS) said in a report.