Egypt is is fully safe for traveling. The government of Egypt is giving more importance to the tourism. Police, tourist police and army are in prominence wherever you go. Egypt has high safety record for tourists and will do all it can to maintain this.
You can apply to your local Egyptian Embassy or Consulate for tourist visa but visitors from most countries can get your tourist visa upon arrival in Egypt. Visas are issued on international airports of Cairo, Hurghada, Sharm el Sheikh or at the ports in Alexandria and Sharm el Sheikh.
Visitors must have passport valid for at least six month after their arrival to Egypt.
Egypt has an overall mild climate, with the best time to visit being between October and May.
Wear whatever is comfortable. It is recommended to have comfortable shoes or sneakers.
There are many touristic areas in Egypt where special concerns are not necessary. In less touristic places, it is recommended to dress relatively modest.
Women should keep their knees and shoulders covered and avoid very tight clothing. Men should also avoid revealing clothing as all Egyptians generally dress more modestly than in many parts of America and Europe.
For instance, wearing shorts is not very common among Egyptians. Dressing with relative modesty is a way of respecting the local culture.
The allowance for cigarettes or alcohol brought to Egypt from another country is 1 liter of alcohol and 200 cigarettes. It is recommended for travelers who wish to have their own supply of cigarettes and alcohol with them in Egypt to purchase them upon arrival at duty free shops in the airports in Cairo, Luxor, Hurghada, El Gouna and Sharm El Sheikh. Tourists are allowed to purchase up to 3 liters of alcohol and up to 200 cigarettes on arrival.
Most Egyptians speak or understand at least some English words or phrases. Some Egyptians can speak French, Italian, Spanish, and German. Our professional guides are accustomed to visitors who cannot speak Arabic and they will speak English and other languages to fulfill the needs of most travelers.
Many travelers enjoy their stay in Egypt without learning a single word of Arabic; however, it is always good to learn a few Arabic phrases to expressing greetings or thanks.
Most of the monuments, museums and historical sites open from 9 am until 5 pm. Open-air historical sites, like the Pyramids of Giza or Karnak, are open from 8 am until sunset.
During Ramadan be aware that these hours will change significantly.
Non-Muslims are welcome to visit most mosques in Egypt. If you want to visit mosques outside of Cairo and Alexandria it is advisable to seek permission before entering mosques where people are less accustomed to tourists.
Tourists and foreigners are welcome in almost all mosques in Egypt at anytime expect when they are being used for prayer.
Mosques where the relatives of the prophet Mohamed were buried like the Mosque of Sayeda Zeinab and the Mosque of El Hussein do not allow tourist visits.
There aren’t really special clothes to be put on while visiting a mosques, churches and monasteries in Egypt. Similar to any religious monuments in the world, visitors should dress modestly and in some mosques, women will be asked to cover their hair.
Men and women will be asked to remove their shoes before entering a mosque.
Photography is allowed in many other ancient sites, mosques and temples in Egypt, but be aware that now the government charges for the privilege of doing so.
In some museums, like the Egyptian Museum of Antiquities in Cairo, and some historical sites, like inside the tombs in the Valley of the Kings in Luxor, photography is prohibited and visitors are asked to leave their cameras at the reception before entering.
It is forbidden to take photographs of police or anything of a military nature or indeed bridges, airports and public works. In those places there will be signs to notify you.
Respect should be given to Egyptian women. Always politely ask permission before taking photos of people, especially women, and expect to be asked for a tip in return.
Tourists in Egypt face few health problems, but occasionally travelers experience some gastric disturbance resulting from drinking tap water or eating from a local restaurant not recommended by their tour guides.
Some travelers might suffer heatstroke or sunburn from the heat and sun during the summer if they are not careful. Taking the proper precautions and drinking bottled water can eliminate any health risks.
There are no obligatory vaccinations but it would be recommended for the senior people and for young children to take vaccinations against Hepatitis C, Typhoid, and an oral dosage of Tetanus.
The official currency of Egypt is the Egyptian pound. One Egyptian pound is 100 piastres. There are banknotes of 1, 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, and 200 LE and there are coins of 25 piastres, 50 piastres, and 1 pound. It can sometimes be difficult to find change for large bills so it is always advisable to have change on hand for taxis and tips.
Credit cards are widely used in Egypt in hotels, many shops, restaurants, and cafes. Most stores in markets like Khan El Khalili and the Luxor touristic market accept credit cards. The most common types of credit cards used in Egypt are Visa, Master Card, and American Express.
Due to the low salaries of many professionals in Egypt, many people depend on tips, or baksheesh as it is called in Egypt, as a major part of their income. Therefore, tipping is considered customary in Egypt.
The amount depends on the situation. In a restaurant, it is good to give between 5 and 10% tip directly to the waiter even when there is service added to the bill. The service tax does not go to the waiter.
For a small favor, like carrying luggage or parking a car, a few Egyptian pounds would be appropriate. Not more than five.
Often times in Egypt you will find someone tending to the bathroom to keep it clean. Giving them one Egyptian pound is an appropriate amount.
Tipping your tour guide and vehicle driver is completely optional but should be considered if you’re provided with great service. If you decide to tip feel free to give what you think your experience was worth.