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Egypt - An update on situation from anyone on the ground?

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Nov 23rd, 2011, 11:43 AM
  #1
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Egypt - An update on situation from anyone on the ground?

I was just wondering if anyone on the ground in Egypt at the moment (may be Casual Cairo) could give us an update on the situation there. I read in the paper this morning that tour operators are starting to cancel trips to Egypt. What is really happening?

We are due to go to Egypt in 6 weeks, so I am watching the situation closely. Obviously we will not put our family at risk, but are reluctant to cancel just yet. Insight from those there would be appreciated.

Thanks.
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Nov 23rd, 2011, 09:16 PM
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I don't know if tour operators are going to cancel trips. That seems a bit extreme to me, but I suppose if it is an American based operation that has no one here to see the reality, they might do it. For the most part the ONLY action is right down just off Tahrir Square. And from the news I'm seeing it looks like it gets rough at night time. I don't go there, so I don't have a first hand report. One of my guides went in the middle of the day Tuesday, and came back with very different photos, and news that things were not dangerous for foreigners. If you do come, I highly suggest you NOT plan an evening strolling through Tahrir Sq though.
But again in 6 weeks, everything will more than likely be COMPLETELY different - probably more peaceful - but time will tell.
All I can say with any certainty is that while I live in Heliopolis (a suburb north of downtown)I hear, smell, see NOTHING of what is going on. Our life outside of Tahrir Sq is pretty much as usual. I have no fear to go to the pyramids, the market, around Islamic Cairo, and I hear you can get into the Museum via the Cornishe entrance easily and the protestors are not going that direction. As a tourist, if I were to be picking a hotel, I would probably move to the Zamalek area or further out of town to avoid any crowds. Those hotels right on Tahrir Sq will be safe, but they also may be very noisy at night.
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Nov 23rd, 2011, 10:21 PM
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Thanks Casual Cairo. You have put my mind at rest for now. We are booked to stay at Longchamps (Zamalek I believe) and don't have plans for evening strolls around Tahir Square. We will keep monitoring the situation, but I really appreciate your input.
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Nov 24th, 2011, 01:49 AM
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travel.state.gov/travel/cis_pa_tw/cis/cis_1108.html

great site to monitor insuremytrip.com and a back up plan wise

Flexibility is the key for me.
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Nov 24th, 2011, 08:12 AM
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Thanks Casual Cairo for this information. As we scheduled to leave the US DEC 1 and arrive in Cairo on the 16th, we are watching closely and wondering what to do. Of course, all our friends are telling us not to go; however, we have read nothing that says anything differently than you report and the Dept.of State is only saying to avoid demonstration areas. It is all rather nerve-wracking though. I'll get track of this thread.
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Nov 24th, 2011, 08:19 AM
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Thanks Debbie
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Nov 24th, 2011, 09:12 AM
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This was posted by a friend of mine. It should ease your fears:

"from a colleague who is running tours in Egypt: She's been in Cairo and says unless you are in Tahrir Square, there is no clue that anything is happening in the city: everywhere else is very calm"
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Nov 24th, 2011, 11:23 AM
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Very true schmerl
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Nov 24th, 2011, 02:40 PM
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Thanks everyone - that it what I suspected. Here we just read one article in the paper and the impression is that it is "everywhere". I appreciate the input.
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Nov 27th, 2011, 02:07 PM
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We returned on Monday from a great 12 day trip in Egypt. Tours are canceling because they aren't getting the customers. Our trip was a wonderful experience and we enjoyed our travels immensely. We ended up in Cairo on the 19th and 20th (at the Kempinski) and outside of having to go unusual routes to get around, we felt completely safe. The media definitely appears to be blowing things out of proportion. If you think about it, Cairo has a population of 20 million (give or take) and the demonstrations are concentrated in a small area. Take along a good dose of common sense and have fun!
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Nov 27th, 2011, 08:48 PM
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THANK YOU KATHIE21!!!!
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Nov 27th, 2011, 10:25 PM
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Kathie21 - so glad you had a great time!
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Nov 30th, 2011, 01:51 AM
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Thank you for update Kathie21, and also Casual Cairo; we are going to Egypt next month.
Did you visit the Egyptian Museum or is it better to skip that at the moment?
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Nov 30th, 2011, 08:57 AM
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Tulips - you can go to the Museum. Lots of people are going. Approach it from the Cornish street and you'll be OK most likely. That is where the tour buses are parking and going in from. Take a guide if you can. It might make you feel more secure, and certainly offer you a better tour of the place.
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Dec 1st, 2011, 07:29 AM
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Thanks Casual Cairo! We will see what it's like early January. We are looking forward to our trip.
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