Is it safe to travel to Egypt in 2023?



Is it safe to travel to Egypt in 2023?

Egypt, a country rich in thousands of years of historical treasures, has been one of the most popular tourist destinations for many years. But is it safe to travel to Egypt now? Read more in our article.

Insurance policy - the key to your safety and peaceful stay in Egypt
Insurance policy - the key to your safety and peaceful stay in Egypt

Egypt is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world. Before the COVID-19 pandemic, more than 10 million (sometimes even 14.5 million) travelers visited the country every year. According to estimates, about 12% of the population of Egypt is employed in positions in the field of tourism.

The country is rich in tourist attractions. This warm African territory has almost everything a tourist needs: from a turquoise sea with a sandy beach to historical and natural attractions.

Most tourists come to Egypt from Germany, Ukraine, Saudi Arabia, Great Britain and Italy.

However, the 2011 Egyptian revolution, which included attacks on foreign journalists and a series of terrorist attacks targeting tourists at resorts and attractions, had a negative impact on the country's tourism sector.

The issue of safety is important when planning travel, so many tourists wonder if it is safe to go to Egypt now? Let's talk further.

Is it safe to travel to Egypt in 2023?

Traveling to Egypt in 2023 is completely safe. Of course, the country experienced a revolution in 2011, there was a certain instability that scared travelers, but now Egypt is quite safe and a very popular resort.

After the end of the revolution, for several years, the Egyptian authorities worked actively to stabilize the situation in the country, and, in particular, the number of tourists began to grow at the resorts of the Red Sea. In 2017, Bloomberg stated that Egypt had "survived its years of social and political unrest" and made it into the top 20 best travel destinations.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, the country's authorities took appropriate measures and Egypt was not even among the 75 countries with the highest number of COVID-19 infections. Currently, there are no quarantine restrictions in the state.

So, a trip to Egypt will be completely safe if a tourist plans a trip with a proven tour operator, stays only in tourist places and follows basic safety rules.

Tips for safe travel in Egypt

  • Be discreet

Egypt is a conservative Muslim country. Islamic traditions respect modesty, and public displays can cause tension. A tourist should not wear formal or official clothing in the state, however, both men and women should refrain from wearing shorts and women should cover their shoulders and cleavage. If your clothes don't match, they can attract unwanted attention on the street. It is also worth refraining from public display of feelings.

Consumption of alcohol is prohibited outside licensed bars and restaurants.

  • Pickpocketing and fraud in Egypt

The violent crime rate in Egypt is very low (much lower than in many Western countries), and the likelihood that you will accidentally encounter danger on the street is extremely low. The local population almost never drinks alcohol due to religious restrictions, so you won't notice the brash behavior of intoxicated people on the street, which is common in some popular tourist destinations in the world.

The risk of pickpocketing is present, especially in major cities such as Cairo, Alexandria and Luxor. Always keep your cash and cards safe with a money belt or hidden pockets. But of course, be attentive to your surroundings. Often, pickpockets will create a scene or engage you in some way to distract you. Be careful when strangers approach you.

  • Check your government's guidelines

 Always check your country's government's travel advisories before arriving in Egypt - this will allow you to be aware of any potential political unrest in the country in advance.

  • Plan a trip with a proven travel operator

It is better to travel in Egypt with a proven tour guide who speaks your language and can organize excursions to the most popular tourist spots. When buying a tour, you will find out what locations you are going to see before you even arrive at your destination.

  • Be ready for crazy traffic on the roads

You should think carefully before renting a car in Egypt, because it can be a real challenge for a tourist. This is due to the fact that the local population often ignores traffic rules and does not comply with speed limits. In case of an accident, no one will think to call the police. Therefore, it is better to travel in this country by tourist bus.

  • Find out the cost of a taxi before the trip

Before getting in a taxi, find out the exact cost of the trip. It is not uncommon for taxi drivers to resort to various manipulations to increase the price: they tell the passenger that the meter is broken, or they choose a longer route or just drive in circles.

  • Avoid demonstrations

Sometimes peaceful protests can turn into violence. Bystanders may become victims of mass arrests that may follow violent protests. Therefore, it is better to avoid street demonstrations.

  • Follow the safety rules when traveling in the Sahara

The Sahara occupies more than half of the territory of Egypt. The desert is vast and amazing, but it can also be dangerous for the inexperienced traveler. If you plan to take a tour of the Sahara, hire an experienced guide.

Is it safe to travel to Egypt in 2023?

The military conflict between Israel and Hamas is intensifying. On October 7, the group fired thousands of rockets from Gaza towards Israeli cities, and also illegally crossed the border, went deep into Israel and killed hundreds of people. In response, the Israeli army launches rocket attacks on the Gaza Strip and plans a ground operation. These events create a certain tension in the countries of the Middle East and the eastern Mediterranean.

Egypt shares a common border with the Gaza Strip, the Rafah checkpoint is located in the north-east of the country. As Israel closes its border with Gaza, the Egyptian crossing is the only portal for people to leave and humanitarian aid to enter Gaza.

Egypt condemns the intensification of military actions, in particular, the country's president, Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, stated that "Israel's bombardment of the Gaza Strip exceeds the right to self-defense and amounts to collective punishment." However, Egypt is in no hurry to open its borders and admit Palestinian refugees into the state, even despite calls from Egyptians to the government to help the peaceful population of the Gaza Strip. Egypt's leadership has publicly doubted that in the event of a mass exodus to Egypt, the hundreds of thousands of displaced Palestinians would be allowed to return, as was the case during previous conflicts. The probability of involving Egypt in hostilities is also small.

Therefore, for now, the overall level of risk in Egypt after the resumption of war between Israel and Hamas has not changed. Unofficial data indicate that the conflict did not affect tourists' vacations in resort towns and visits to archaeological sites.

As before, the governments of many countries in Europe and the world advise their citizens to refrain from traveling to most of the territory of Egypt. Travel only to tourist areas of the country is not prohibited. Flights from other countries to Cairo, Sharm el-Sheikh and another main Red Sea airport, Hurghada, do not fly near the conflict zone. Therefore, travel companies continue to send holidaymakers to Egypt and should not offer refunds to people who do not wish to travel.

There is no reason to avoid traveling to Egypt at this time. However, the state can still open the borders and accept refugees, then in addition to the civilian population, Hamas militants can enter the country, which will increase the level of terrorist threat in the region. Therefore, when planning a trip to Egypt, we advise you to be careful and follow the change in the situation in the country.

Daria Rogova, Head of Insurance at Visit World

To move, travel or work safely in a new country, you will need travel insurance. You can apply for an extended policy on our website here.

Products from Visit World for a comfortable trip:

Checklist for obtaining a visa and necessary documents in Egypt;

Legal advice on business and tourism in Egypt;

Travel and medical insurance for foreigners in Egypt;

Legal advice on immigrationeducation or medical treatment in Egypt;

Insurance for foreign students in Egypt.

More articles on the topic: 

Find the 7 best countries for Americans to visit here.

Find out which countries are the most dangerous in Europe here.

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