EgyptEgypt

Sidewalk meets the sand in Egypt. Vibrant, energetic Cairo contrasts starkly with the timelessness of pyramids and the silence of the desert. Marvel at the Pharaoh's treasures, then haggle for your own at a rowdy open air bazaar. Sail the Nile by luxury cruise ship or felucca, a small Egyptian sailboat.

Fast Facts

Already booked on one of our packages to Egypt? See everything you need to know before you go.

Overview

Capital: Cairo
Population:  95.69 million
Currency: Egyption pound (LE)
Languages: Egyptian Arabic
Drives on the: Right
Time zone: EET (UTC +2)

Entry requirements

You must be in possession of a passport valid for at least 6 months after the date of travel. In addition, your passport must have at least 2 blank visa pages. A visa is required to enter Egypt. Visas for U.S. citizens have been pre-arranged. Our representative will meet you at the passport control area to assist and have your pre-approved visa available.

Non U.S. citizens must check with their respective consulates to all travel destinations as to the most current visa requirements. Please remember, it is your responsibility to obtain the necessary travel documents before the trip. Please remember to bring your passport along with you.

We will pre-arrange your travel visa, which will be stamped upon arrival.

If you do not hold a U.S. passport, you are responsible for determining all entry requirements and obtaining any necessary visas. We recommend using an expedited visa service.

More information about passport, visa & entry requirements.

Health Precautions & Vaccinations

According to the Center for Disease Control, “A limited risk of malaria exists in parts of Algeria, Egypt, and Morocco. Taking an antimalarial drug is not recommended as the risk for travelers is considered to be extremely low. However, travelers should use insect repellent to prevent mosquito bites.”

Do not swim in fresh water or ocean water, as parasites are prevalent. Skin infections are common; even the smallest wound should be disinfected and covered with a bandage.

Center for Disease Control
World Health Organization

Weather

Egypt generally has a warm and hot weather with cooler nights. There are 2 seasons in Egypt, winter which is from November to April and summer from May to October. Average temperature during winter ranges from 60’s to 80’s while in summer, average temperature will be from 80’s to 90’s. During the months of March & April, there will be periods of sand storms blowing in different places due to the Khamsin.

What to wear

Since Egypt is primarily a Muslim country, customs will be different from what you are accustomed to in the USA. When visiting mosques and for touring, you should plan to dress modestly. Despite the heat, it is still preferred that women do not wear shorts or halter-style tops. Slacks or skirts are recommended. T-shirts are also considered appropriate.

Note: If visiting mosques and other sacred sites, kindly ensure to dress appropriately – long sleeves, long, loose fitting, ankle length trousers or skirts for women and men. No light colored and transparent or see through clothing for women.

We recommend that you bring along hat, sunscreen and a light sweater as the day and nighttime temperatures vary dramatically. Packing to dress in layers is another way to prepare for a variety of weather conditions. If you have two pairs of comfortable (broken in, not brand new) walking shoes, by all means, take both pairs. Finally, remember that comfort and convenience should dictate your wardrobe for the tour, and casual clothes are in order for most every occasion as you travel.

Tipping

A small gratuity to your guides and drivers will be greatly appreciated by them. For Cairo, the recommended amount is $5 per person per day for the local guide; $3 per person per day for the drivers and $2 per person per day for the tour manager in Cairo.

For the cruise portion, we recommend a total tip of $15 per person per day allocated to the following: $7 per person per day for the cruise ship staff; $4 per person per day for the guide, $2 per person per day for the driver and $2 for the tour manager in Luxor and Aswan.

Please Note: It is customary for the Cairo guide or Tour Manager to collect on arrival the minimal amount as mentioned above for tips to be distributed on your behalf amongst all service personnel who will assist the group in different aspects of the tour.

It is also customary to tip the hotel staff. Our recommended amount is $1 per person per day for housekeeping. The same amount is recommended for restaurant staff. Tips to porters and luggage handlers is included in the package. However, a modest tip of an extra US$1-2 per luggage to the hotel porters who bring your luggage to the room is recommended. As always, gratuities are an individual expression of thanks and should be based on the level of service provided. It is also customary to tip the hotel staff. Our recommended amount is $1 per person per day for housekeeping. The same amount is recommended for restaurant staff. As always, gratuities are an individual expression of thanks and should be based on the level of service provided.

Money & Credit Cards

The official currency in Egypt is the Egyptian pound. Hotels and some stores accept credit cards (Visa or MasterCard only). However, for “street shopping” you will need local currency or U.S. Dollars. Hotels, banks and foreign exchange bureaus will be able to exchange cash to local currency. We highly recommend that you bring along crisp, new bills. Old, torn, crumpled bills may not be accepted. Be sure to call your credit card providers to let them know you will be traveling abroad, the places you’ll be visiting and the dates of your trip. This is important for your own protection. For small purchases, we recommend that you use the ATM machines to get cash in local currency so that you can avoid using your credit card in unknown shops where there is a higher risk of having your credit card numbers “borrowed” for unauthorized purchases. Traveler’s checks are no longer widely accepted. If you intend to use traveler’s checks, please be sure to verify that they are still accepted in the places visited on this tour.

Always notify your bank prior to departure to avoid any problems using your credit or debit card abroad.

Shopping

You will have ample opportunity during your visit to Egypt to shop for souvenirs, including artwork, handicrafts and even jewelry. If you purchase such items, do so with the understanding that these items may not have the same high value you were led to believe. A good rule of thumb when shopping abroad is to choose items that you love and that will remind you of the destination. If you want to shop for high value items, better do so from a trusted merchant at home unless the pleasure of the happy memory of your trip will keep you from regretting your purchase.

While we take great care in arranging the components of your tour, we have no relationship with the shopping venues you’ll encounter, and we cannot be liable for any purchases you make. Your guides will no doubt have some favorite shopping places, where the vendors are known, provide good quality merchandise and probably pay some sort of commission from sales to the guide. This should not surprise or offend you, as this is how business is done throughout the Middle East and other regions around the world. Please keep in mind that many, if not most stores outside the U.S., will not allow exchanges or refunds for your purchased items.

Tips for Bargaining: Bargaining is a way of life in the Middle East. If you want to purchase something, whether in a shop or a souk (or bazaar) and you think the price you’ve been quoted is too high, thank the vendor and walk away. Generally, he/she will come after you with a lower price. It is usually considered good bargaining policy to offer half the asking price, and negotiate from there. Negotiations should be done in a respectful way.

Electricity & Power Adapters

220 volts. Plug C. You will need a voltage converter and plug adapter in order to use U.S. appliances. We recommend getting a universal adapter and converter kit. View more information about electrical standards around the world.

More information about electrical standards around the world.

Cell Phones & Internet

Want to take your cell phone, tablet or laptop, but not sure how to get cell service or wifi? See our blog posts on using your cell phone abroad and the top 5 ways to get Internet abroad.

Photography

Cameras and video recorders are permitted, and photography is generally permitted everywhere except at airports and military installations. Memory cards for digital cameras will be available in major cities.

Tours & Packages

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Independent Package Athens & 7 Day Three Continents Cruise
Athens, then voyage to 3 continents: Asia, Europe & Africa. Visit Egypt, Israel, Cyprus, Rhodes & Turkey; independent travel with flights & hotel
from $3099 w/ Flights from $2699 Tour Only 12 days
per person, double occupancy*
See package dates
Small Group Tour Best of Egypt & Nile Cruise
Timeless Cairo & the Pyramids, plus a Nile cruise through the temples & history of Luxor, Esna, Edfu, Kom Ombo & Aswan; optional extension to Petra
from $2599 w/ Flights 11 days
per person, double occupancy*
See package dates
Small Group Tour Dazzling Dubai & Cairo
The glittering playground of Dubai; plus buzzing Cairo, the Sphinx & Pyramids of Giza; plus optional Nile Cruise extension
from $2599 w/ Flights 10 days
per person, double occupancy*
See package dates

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