What do you know about Egypt 2

Before leaving for Egypt, it is recommended that you read this travel tips page carefully. This way you will not be surprised by the time difference and climate of Egypt, you will know what the best time to travel to Egypt is and see exactly where your holiday destination is on the map. The currency of Egypt is the Egyptian pound. This page also tells you how to best pay during your vacation and how you can save on cash withdrawals and exchange rate fees.

Egypt is a country with a rich history, just think of Cleopatra, the Pharaohs or the Bible. Egypt is not just a desert with a river and a few pyramids. The country has a total area of ​​more than one million square kilometers and the capital Cairo is the largest metropolitan area on the African continent. On this page you will get an impression of one of the most beautiful countries on the African continent. With this information, prepare yourself well for your trip and don't forget to apply for your visa in good time.


facts and figures

languageArabic
Residents98 million
CapitalKaïro (16.2 million inhabitants)
religionIslam (90%) and Christianity (10%)
currencyEgyptian pound (EGP)
time shift0 hours (summer) or 1 hour (winter)
Flight time4 to 5 hours
electricity220V, 50Hz (as in Germany)
Plug adapterNot required
tap waterNo drinking water
visaVisa is required
securitySee the travel and safety information for Egypt

map

The map clearly shows that Egypt lies on the border of the African and Asian continents. Most of the country, in which the Nile also flows, belongs to Africa. However, Sinai, the peninsula in the northeastern part of the country, is located in Asia. The border between the two continents is at the point where the Suez Canal was dug in 1870. The Sinai is a popular holiday destination for Germans, Austrians and Swiss, especially the resorts in Sharm-el-Sheikh are visited by many tourists. However, most of the inhabitants of Egypt live in the African part of the country, in and around the capital Cairo. Like most cities in Egypt, Cairo is located on the banks of the Nile. The Nile, with its approx. 6,000 kilometers in length, is a lifeline of Africa and flows from Rwanda and Burundi over Lake Victoria in Tanzania and through Uganda and South Sudan, Sudan and Egypt to the Mediterranean Sea, which is the northern border of Egypt.


Tourist Attractions

A visit to the Egyptian pyramids is a must for many tourists. The most famous and most visited pyramids, which include the Giza Pyramids, are located near Cairo. Among other things, the pyramids of Cheops, Chefren and Mykerinos are located in Giza, a suburb of Cairo and the pyramids in this part of Egypt are among the oldest surviving structures known to man. The Sphinx, one of the seven wonders of the world, is also located there. Another famous attraction is Luxor, a city of roughly half a million people, roughly half the way the Nile flows through Egypt. Cruising the Nile is a popular way to explore Luxor.

Beach resorts and diving spots in Egypt
In addition to the ancient buildings, the resorts in Egypt are also attractions for tourists. The most famous seaside resorts are on the Sinai peninsula: Sharm-el-Sheikh and Dahab. In addition, some places on the Red Sea are very popular in the African part of the country. These include Hurghada, Marsa Alam, Safaga and Soma Bay. These places are ideal not only for relaxation, but also for an active holiday. The most beautiful diving areas in the world can be visited from the coastal cities around the Red Sea. However, there are hardly any tourists to be found in the vast majority of Egypt. This has to do with the fact that large parts of the country are desert and that there are security risks when traveling to different areas.

The Sphinx, one of the oldest and most famous Egyptian structures


Ancient egypt

Ancient Egypt was one of the first advanced civilizations in the world. It originated on the Nile about 5300 years ago and existed for about 3000 years. The civilization arose in part due to the expansion of the Sahara. As the land dried up, the population moved more and more in the direction of the Nile. Because of the fertile soil, it was an ideal place for a culture based on agriculture to develop. This culture was ruled by pharaohs. The first pyramid was built around 4,500 years ago.


Airport

Most tourists traveling to Egypt land at one of the following airports:

  • Cairo (CAI)
  • Sharm el Sheikh (SSH)
  • Luxor (LXR)
  • Hurghada International (HRG)
  • Marsa Alam (RMF)
  • Alexandria (ALY)
  • Aswan (ASWE)

Climate and the best travel time

About 90% of Egypt is desert. It is therefore not surprising that Egypt primarily has a desert climate. So it will come as no surprise that Egypt can get very hot. Note, however, that it can get cold in the evenings and at night, so a warm sweater or vest is not an unnecessary luxury. The difference between the hottest and coldest moments of the day is often around 20 ungefähr in the desert. In the capital Cairo and the seaside resorts on the Red Sea, however, the temperature differences are smaller, usually 11 to 15 degrees within 25 hours. It rarely rains in Egypt, at most 20 days a year. Most of the rain falls on the Mediterranean coast, the further south, the less rain there is. In Cairo it rains about the same amount every year as on a single rainy day in Germany. South of Cairo, the climate is even drier. Tourists therefore do not need to worry about rain.

Desert climate in Egypt: bring the right clothes

Like Germany, Austria and Switzerland, Egypt is located in the northern hemisphere. The summer in Egypt therefore takes place at the same time as our summer. The hottest months are April to October. During these months it is almost always 30 ℃, sometimes (much) hotter during the day. In the summer months, temperatures of 40 degrees in the shade are not exceptional. Many tourists travel to Egypt in summer, but the country is becoming increasingly popular in winter. The winter sun still ensures temperatures of 21 to 27 ℃ during the day. Since it can cool down to 10 ℃ in the evening in winter, it is advisable to bring warmer clothing with you. Because of the strong sun, it is recommended that you use sunscreen and, if possible, wear light clothing with long sleeves during the day. Bringing good sunglasses and a cap is also recommended.

Desert wind

Especially in April there are often strong and very warm winds. The wind usually carries a lot of desert sand with it, which can irritate people with sensitive skin or contact lenses. When a desert wind sets in, the temperature in Egypt sometimes rises by up to twenty degrees within a few hours.

Best travel time

For the best time to travel, consider the climate in Egypt. The best travel time is difficult to put on a calendar. German, Austrian and Swiss tourists are increasingly going on vacation outside of the summer holidays. Then Egypt is the perfect travel destination. Although summer in Egypt coincides with our summer, visiting in winter is also a pleasant experience. The best time to travel in this regard is from September to March. However, since the weather in Egypt is beautiful all year round and the country has no rainy season, it can also be said that the best travel time is twelve months of the year.


Currency: pay with the Egyptian pound

In Egypt, the Egyptian pound is used to pay. One euro is worth about twenty pounds. The exchange rate is currently favorable for travelers with a bank account in euros. This makes hotels and restaurants very affordable. You can eat in a restaurant for the equivalent of three to eight euros. Alcohol is relatively expensive in Egypt, you should expect the same prices as in Germany, Austria or Switzerland.

Pay with a debit or credit card?

German, Austrian and Swiss debit cards (these are all bank cards with the Maestro or V-Pay symbol) are accepted almost everywhere. However, the number of ATMs is limited. It is usually cheaper to pay with a debit card than with a credit card. However, a fee will also be charged for paying by debit card. It is therefore best to withdraw cash from an ATM with your debit card and use it during your stay in Egypt. It is usually very expensive to change money at an exchange office, both before your departure and in Egypt itself. We therefore recommend that you withdraw enough cash for the next few days as soon as you arrive at the airport.

Activate your debit card before your trip?

Credit and debit cards are often protected from misuse abroad by restrictions on use. For example, some bank cards are automatically blocked if they are used abroad and the bank does not expect it to. We therefore recommend that you check whether you can use your bank card in Egypt and, if necessary, tell your bank (online) that you are going to Egypt and want to use your bank card there.

Mosque in Cairo, the capital of Egypt


Internet, WiFi and phone calls in Egypt

Most tourists want to relax during their vacation, but still want to be reachable. There are three ways to stay easily accessible in Egypt.

wiseadvantagedisadvantage
Use a German, Austrian or Swiss SIM cardEasyVery expensive
Buy a SIM card on site in EgyptCheapest optionOther phone number
Arrange WiFi in advanceEasyTelephoning not possible

We do not recommend using your German, Austrian or Swiss SIM card in Egypt. The fees for this are often very high. At the airport in Egypt you usually have the option of buying a cheap prepaid SIM card. Note, however, that it is not very easy to top up your credit while you are on vacation. A third option is to rent a Pocket WiFi, also known as MiFi. This is a WLAN hotspot with a built-in SIM card. MiFis can be rented especially for holidays in Egypt. The fees are much lower than if you were to use your German, Austrian or Swiss SIM card. You can also generate Internet for several travelers at the same time with a single MiFi. With a MiFi you can only make calls with Skype or other online services.


Time difference between Egypt and Germany / Austria / Switzerland

Egypt belongs to the time zone UTC +2. This means that it is one hour later in Egypt than in Germany, Austria and Switzerland, with the exception of daylight saving time, as Egypt does not have daylight saving time. In summer there is therefore no time difference between Germany, Austria, Switzerland and Egypt.


Apply for Egypt visa

There is a visa requirement in Egypt. This means that travelers need a visa to go through passport control in Egypt. Using the online application form, it is very easy to get a visa to Egypt.
Apply for your Egypt visa now


Security in Egypt

For a safe vacation, it is advisable to read the travel and safety information for Egypt before leaving. You can find these on the website of the Federal Foreign Office (Germany) and the BMEIA (Austria). On this website you can also read some health tips to reduce the risk of illness as much as possible.