I had the opportunity to go to Egypt in May 2017 and it was quite the experience! If you are thinking of traveling to Egypt, check out these 7 must-know facts that you should know/mentally prepare for:
1. BEWARE OF STREET FOOD! If you have ever traveled abroad, then you probably know the rule of thumb about drinking bottled water. With street food, you should also proceed with caution. Egypt is an impoverished country so their quality of food is not what you might be used to eating. Also, they might use different spices that you’re not used to. To be on the safe side, buy some Pepto Bismol or visit your local travel clinic for any medicinal recommendations.
You can also download the CDC travel app called Can I Eat This?
2. Get your Vaccines! Vaccines might be a little costly at the travel clinic (it cost be about $450 to get an assortment of them) but the CDC recommends you get them four to six weeks prior to travel. It might seem like no big deal, but it is better to be safe than sorry! If you don’t know what vaccines you should be getting, you can download the CDC’s travel app called Trav Well or visit their site for more information.
3. You can find the police EVERYWHERE! While you may feel safe that there is police nearby, you still have to be aware of your surroundings.
4. “There’s no such thing as a free lunch!” If you’ve had an economics class in high school or in college, then this phrase might seem familiar to you. Basically, you don’t get something for nothing. Don’t expect people to do anything for free; every action, purchase, or service requires some kind of tip (taxi drivers, luggage carriers, street vendors, etc.) If you go to a public bathroom, they even want you to tip.
5. Get a Visa! Egypt requires you to have a visa when entering the country. Luckily, once you land, you can purchase a 30-day visa for 25 USD.
6. Egypt is an Islamic country! The temperatures are really high during late spring and summer, but you still have to dress appropriately. Since you are a visitor in their country, you have to respect their local traditions, customs and laws. Embrace the culture!
7. Beware of traffic! Egypt traffic is absolutely horrible. If you need to be at your desired location at a particular time, plan your travel time accordingly. You don’t want to miss your excursion, or most importantly, your flight!
If you want to read about my experience, check out The Egyptian Experience blog!