Traveller Tips

In Egypt, Friday is the weekly day of rest. However, this does not mean that everything is at a standstill. Public offices are closed on Fridays and Saturdays. Islamic Holidays (and Ramadan, too) are based on the lunar calendar and change annually. Christian holidays are generally different from the Western ones, like everywhere in the East. For instance, Christmas is on January 6. Tourist attractions are normally open all year except on New Year's Day, only visits of religious sites (monasteries, mosques, etc.) are restricted on holidays. MEDICAL REQUIREMENTS, IMMUNIZATIONS, VACCINATIONS: We recommend you to take advice from your doctor or pharmacist.

No immunizations or vaccinations are required for travels to Egypt.

The following applies to Egypt as well as for all other Southern countries: Do not drink unboiled water that is not in a (mineral water or bottled). Iced drinks are often responsible for unpleasant health problems if you are feeling hot. If you still fear "Pharao's curse" use the advice taken before from your doctor or pharmacist, so you may find the right medicine in your first-aid kit. CURRENCY:
The local currency is the Egyptian pound (LE or EGP). 1 LE is 100 piasters.

The amount you are allowed to import or export to or from Egypt is limited to EGP 1,000, but other currencies may be imported without any restrictions, but we recommend you to declare major sums. You can change traveller's cheques and cash in all major hotels.

Credit cards are accepted in several hotels, restaurants and shops; you can also use your VISA or Mastercard at some cash dispensers and ATMs to obtain cash, mostly in typical resorts like Sharm el Sheikh, Hurghada, El Gouna, Makadi Bay etc.

TIPPING ("bakshish")
Tips are a major part of income in Egypt and are expected from anybody who has been rendered a service. Tip service personnel in restaurants and taxi drivers at least 10 %.

CET plus 1 hour (Paris, Frankfurt)
UTC/GMT plus 2 hours (London)

The best travel season is from October to May when the temperature in Cairo is comfortable in the daytime, and cool or even cold at night. Weather in Upper Egypt, Luxor, Aswan and Abu Simbel is comfortably warm, but it may get cold at night.

During the summer months it is hot and dry in Cairo and on the Red Sea, and it may get extremely hot in upper Egypt.

Average temperatures :

Cairo Aswan
January 7/19o C 11/24o C
Mars 3/26o C 15/32o C
May 18/35o C 22/38o C
July 23/37o C 27/43o C
September 21/35o C 24/41o C
November 13/27o C 16/32o C

Classification of accommodation facilities
Hotels are classified in the national categories from * to *****. Like anywhere else the 5-star hotel is best. Classification, like all over the world, is based on country-specific criteria.

For places like Cairo, Luxor, Aswan etc which are not typical bathing resorts for Western tourists we recommend to wear normal clothes worn in Western countries like those we wear at home in summer, too. Shorts are not advisable in the towns and cities, and women should cover their arms.

Decent clothing is especially advisable for visits of the holy places of Islam (mosques, for example).

And of course, don't forget your swimwear, shorts and sunglasses. Beaches of the bathing resorts are like any others all over the world. Solar radiation on the Red Sea is very intensive and with the constant breeze, you may not feel it right away. A cap, shirt, sunglasses and high protection sun cream will protect you against the painful sunburn. (Those who like snorkeling for a long time better take T-shirts with them to cover their backs that would otherwise be exposed to the sun without protection.

We recommend you to wear good and comfortable footwear for excursions, round trips and sightseeing. (Please remember: sandals are extremely uncomfortable to walk in the desert sand - and Egyptian deserts are everywhere!

Winter months: A light sweater, a light coat or jacket for the cool evenings.
Summer months: light cotton clothing and a light jacket for the evenings.

220 volts AC, generally from two-pole outlets. We recommend to take an adaptor plug with you when you make long round trips.