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Pre-departure information

Name & Location
Time Zone
Language
Religion
Electricity

Visa Requirements:

Passports
Money
Currency
Currency exchange
Credit & debit cards
Traveller's cheques
Currency restrictions
Public Holidays
Others
Note
Medical requirements
Food & Drink
Shopping
Photography
Weather
Temperatures
Medication:
Power Adapters

Pre-departure information

Name & Location: Top

Egypt “Miṣr” Arab Republic of Egypt, is a country in North Africa, includes the Sinai Peninsula, a land bridge to Asia. Covering an area of about 1,001,450 square kilometers, Egypt borders Libya to the west, Sudan to the south, and Palestine to the northeast; on the north and the east are the Mediterranean Sea and the Red Sea, respectively Egypt is the fifteenth most crowded country in the world. The vast majority of its 78.8 million populations living near the banks of the Nile River
(about 40,000km² ) where the only arable agricultural land is found. Large areas of land form part of the Sahara Desert and are lightly inhabited. Around half of Egypt's inhabitants live in urban areas, with the majority spread across the densely populated centers of greater Cairo), Alexandria and other major towns in the Nile Delta.
Egypt is famous for its significant monuments, including the Giza Pyramids and the Great Sphinx of Giza
Today, Egypt is widely regarded as a main political and cultural centre of the Middle East.

Time Zone: Top

GMT + 2 (GMT + 3 from last Friday in April to last Thursday in September).

Language Top

Arabic is the official language. English and French are widely spoken.

Religion Top

According to the 1986 census, over 94 per cent of the population follows Islam; the majority of the rest is Christian. All types of Christianity are represented, especially the Coptic Christian Church. There is also a small Jewish minority.

Electricity Top

Most areas 220 volts AC, 50Hz. Certain rural parts still use 110 to 380 volts AC.

Visa Requirements:

Passports Top

Passport valid for at least six months required by all nationals referred to in the chart above.
A visa is required for all nationalities and can be issued at the airport upon arrival for some nationalities,
For some other nationalities an entry visa to Egypt can be obtained from Egyptian Embassy in their country . Some nationalities do not require an entry Visa ,
Visa must be paid in foreign currency

(a) 1. EU nationals traveling to Sharm El Sheikh or Taba resorts for up to 14 days. They will receive an entry permission stamp upon arrival;

(b) those continuing their journey to a third country within 24 hours, provided holding
confirmed tickets;

(c) cruise ship passengers entering Egypt, at any port, for a maximum of three days.

Money

Currency Top

Egyptian Pound (EGP; symbol E£) = 100 piastres. Notes are in denominations of E£100, 50, 20, 10, 5, 1, 50 piastres and 25 piastres. Coins are in denominations of 20, 10 and 5 piastres.

Currency exchange Top

Available at banks, official bureaux de change and most hotels. Banks often have better exchange rates than bureaux de change or hotels. All common international currencies are accepted.

Credit & debit cards Top

American Express, Diners Club, MasterCard and Visa are accepted, but generally only in bigger hotels or restaurants in Cairo and restaurants in tourist areas.

Traveller's cheques Top

To avoid additional exchange rate charges, travelers are advised to take traveller's cheques in US Dollars, Euros or Pounds Sterling.

Currency restrictions Top

The import and export of foreign currency is unlimited. The import of local currency is unlimited. The export of local currency is prohibited.

Public Holidays Top

Below are listed Public Holidays for the January 2006-June 2007 period.
Jan 7 2006* Coptic Christmas Day. Jan 10 Grand Feast. Jan 31 Islamic New Year. Apr 23 Sham el-Nassim (Coptic Easter). Apr 25 Sinai Liberation Day (Sinai only). May 1 Labour Day. Jun 18 Liberation Day. Jul 23 Revolution Day. Aug 15 Wafa'a el Nil (Flooding of the Nile). Sept 11* Coptic New Year. Oct 6 Armed Forces Day. Oct 22 Bairam Feast (End of Ramadan). Oct 24 suez Victory Day. Dec 23 Victory Day. Dec 31 Grand Feast.
Jan 7 2007* Coptic Christmas Day. Jan 20 Islamic New Year. Apr 8 Sham el-Nassim (Coptic Easter). Apr 25 Sinai Liberation Day (Sinai only). May 1 Labour Day. Jun 18 Liberation Day.

Note Top

(a) These holidays are not official, although Coptic Christians may observe them. (b) Muslim festivals are timed according to local sightings of various phases of the moon and the dates given above are approximations. During the lunar month of Ramadan that precedes the Bairam Feast, Muslims fast during the day and feast at night and normal business patterns may be interrupted. Some restaurants are closed during the day but most tourist attractions and hotels are not affected. Some disruption may continue into the three-day Grand Feast itself.

Medical requirements Top

No immunizations are required or needed Unless stated by the ministry of Health .

Food & Drink Top

Egyptian cuisine is excellent, combining many of the best traditions of Middle Eastern cooking, and there are both large hotel restaurants and smaller specialist ones throughout the main towns. Some of the larger hotels in Cairo and its environs have kitchens serving top quality cosmopolitan dishes. In the centre of Cairo, American-style snack bars are also spreading. Restaurants have waiter service. Although Egypt is a Muslim country, alcohol is available in cafe-style bars and good restaurants. The legal drinking age is 21.

Egypt Enjoys a highly sophisticated & modern water purification system , Still you always have to remember to drink bottled water & not to use ice cubes as well , it’s very safe to eat Dairy products as it’s all pasteurized ,

Remember to drink considerable amounts of water to avoid dehydration during the summer , Make sure that all the food you eat is cooked well & your fruits & Vegetables are Peeled if you are going to Eat it uncooked.
Tipping: 10 to 12 per cent is added to hotel and restaurant bills but an extra tip of 5 per cent is normal. Taxi drivers generally expect 10 per cent.

Shopping Top

The most interesting shopping area for tourists in Cairo is the old bazaar, Khan-el-Khalili, There are also modern shopping centres available, particularly . Haggling is expected, and sometimes encouraged, as a way of communication and human contact.
Shopping hours: Winter: Tues, Wed, Fri and Sat 0900-1900, Mon and Thurs 0900-2000. During Ramadan, hours vary, with shops often closing on Sunday. Summer: Tues, Wed, Fri-Sun 0900-1230 and 1600-2000

Photography Top

Photography is allowed any where expect military zones & some Archeological sites that would require you to pay a fee for using your snapshot or video camera,
it’s always recommended to consult with you tour coordinator before using the camera

Weather Top

Egypt has year-round sun, and almost no rain except in Alexandria, which has a more Mediterranean climate than the rest of the country. Daytime temperatures range from pleasantly warm in the winter to very hot in the summer. Northerly cities such as Cairo and Alexandria are generally about 5ºC cooler than southerly areas such as Aswan and Abu Simbel. Nights in the desert can be extremely cold.

Local average temperatures range\
as follows for the year (°C):WHAT TO PACK
Top

Jan

Feb

Mar

Apr

May

Jun

Jul

Aug

Sep

Oct

Nov

Dec

Cairo

High

19

21

24

28

32

35

35

35

32

30

24

21

Low

9

9

11

14

17

18

22

22

20

18

14

11

Luxor

High

23

25

29

35

40

41

41

41

39

35

30

25

Low

5

7

11

16

21

23

24

24

22

18

12

8

Aswan

High

24

30

35

39

42

41

41

40

36

30

25

25

Low

8

9

13

17

21

24

24

25

22

9

14

10

Sharm El-Sheikh

High

23

26

29

33

36

34

34

34

33

28

23

23

Low

16

17

18

21

24

26

27

27

26

23

20

16

In addition to your clothing, following the guidelines above, we recommend to pack the following:
Very good, comfortable walking shoes: You will be doing a considerable amount of walking, and shoes should not be just comfortable, but comfortable to walk long distances.
Hats and other covering: Large brimmed hats that provide not only a head covering but also a certain amount of shade will come in very handy in the hot Egyptian sun during summer. In addition, scarves or other apparel should be taken along to cover shoulders and arms, and again, or not only important for visiting religious sites, but also to keep the sun off during treks. In very hot weather, a cloth hat or scarf that can be soaked will also help keep your head cool.
Sun block: While sun blocks may be purchased in Egypt, you might prefer to bring your own favorite brand.
Sunglasses: Another item that may be necessary to avoid the direct sun rays coming direct into your eyes.
If you wear prescription glasses, bring an extra pair or at least a copy of the prescription. If you wear contact lenses you may wish to bring a pair of glasses along, as the fine sand dust in the air in Egypt may irritate your lenses.
Also useful are cool wipes and moisturizing creams to protect your face from the hot, dry climate.
Medication: Top
Of course, bring your prescription medicine. There is no problem with bringing prescription medication into Egypt. It is also more convenient to bring your favorite non-prescription medications along.
Power Adapters: Top
Power Adapters come in two different varieties. Some electronic equipment have switches to allow you to change the power input type. For these, a simple wall adapter is all that is required. However, other electronic devices do not have such switches and in this case, you not only need a wall adapter, but also a power converter. Egypt uses 220 volt and plugs are two prong rounded.
An Extra Bag: A bag, preferably soft, which can be crunched up and carried into Egypt in another bag will be handy for most people. The bag will then be used to carry back souvenirs.
Beware: Egypt Air has been strictly enforcing excess baggage charges. To avoid these charges, you should travel on domestic flights with less than 20 kilos of checked baggage. You can deposit some of your excess luggage at the hotel for your second stay. Our representative will be happy to organize that for you.