Egypt with a senior any suggestions?

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Jun 3rd, 2005, 04:07 AM
  #1
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Egypt with a senior any suggestions?

My elderly mother has always wanted to see Egypt. Helpful hints on best time of year, tour companys, pitfalls to watch out for. General help and suggestions required. When I think of travel with mom it's 4 stars or better. She is mobile but not agile.
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Jun 3rd, 2005, 04:55 AM
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If you have the money, consider Abercrombie & Kent, a very upscale tour company that will put together a personalized trip that won't push too hard. They'll put you in the best hotels. Overseas Adventure Travel tends to have groups that average over 50 years (it's the all-ages equivalent to Grand Circle and uses somewhat better hotels). But if your mom needs more of a helping hand, you'll be better off with your own, private guides and some additional hand-holding.
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Jun 3rd, 2005, 08:33 AM
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My husband & I (60 ish) went to Egypt & Jordan with Grand Circle because at the time we scheduled it OAT was not doing tours to Egypt. It was a great tour & the "boat" was very nice. There are stairs to deal with and uneven terrain so that is something to think about. The tour bus does drop you off very near the sites, which is great.
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Jun 3rd, 2005, 05:48 PM
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Since I am a rehab RN, I tend to notice accessibility things when I visit places. For one who is "mobile but not agile" I see several issues. First, the heat. I obviously do not know her age, but many older people have more difficulty with heat. Therefore, I would stick to late fall, winter and very early spring. We were there in April 2001 and it was incredibly hot.

Second, walking distances. In many locations, tour buses can park fairly close to site. However, there will still be a walk of varying distances anywhere you visit. If some of the longer walks are too much for her, she could always just stay on the bus.

Third, the terrain. Parking lots are paved, but some walkways have very uneven paving and stones. Even if she does not already use one, I would suggest a quad cane that she has practiced with at home. Of course, solid, flat shoes will help as well. Sand can be slippery. Stairs are everywhere - Valley of Kings was especially stair-heavy. She could always opt to stay outside in stairs to enter a building were too much for her. It is unlikely she will be able to make the climb to get into whichever of the Pyramids is open. In some places stairs are only way to enter a bathroom at various sites. Since she is used to nicer accomodations, warn her that some of the bathrooms are gross at best.

Make sure you pick a tour with a Nile cruise - this would be especially well-suited to her.

I think the trip is doable with the realization that some places may be too difficult for her. I would also be cautious regarding general health - check with her MD, make sure she has all necessary prescriptions with her, and be especially careful regarding food and drink to avoid gastrointestinal ailments and dehydration. Also, be aware that Medicare does not cover outside the US - so if that is part of her insurance package, she will need to purchase a trip insurance policy.

Make sure she can handle the long flight to Cairo. If you are traveling from East Coast US by chance, I would recommend the non-stop (EgyptAir) flight from JFK to Cairo.
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Jun 3rd, 2005, 05:56 PM
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You also asked for hints on what time of year to visit Egypt. That could be your most important decision! It gets very hot there, so choose a month that will be cooler. We went in November and it was very warm during the day at most of the sites, but other months can be extremely hot. Get info from Egyptian tourism & a good guide book.
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Jun 5th, 2005, 03:35 AM
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kp
 
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I returned from the OAT trip yesterday and since many of the included tours require agility I don't believe their tour is right for your Mom. For example, it was necessary to climb up a river bank for the "farm breakfast" since we arrived by small boat.
Boats are used quite often during portions of the trip and while many times they do dock at a pier it is still necessary to climb over seats to get in and out. Other times we had to walk a plank to get on or off.
A private tour would probably be more appropriate.
The participants in our group ranged in age from 18 to 82.
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Jun 5th, 2005, 06:48 AM
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Eric family; I was looking at the Egypt Highlights trip to Egypt and Jordan. I have some questions as to how was the sitting train and what was the boat on the nile like? Are the entrance fees extra? Did you do any of the side trips? I like the idea of arriving in Eqypt on my own as I have travel points I can use. I would also like some spare time in Jordan to visit a friend in Amand if possible.

I am not familuar with OAT could someone explain. Abercrombie & Kent sound wonderful. Has anyone had personal experience?
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Jun 20th, 2005, 11:22 AM
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I would suggest getting a private guide and custom tour. The first guided tour I went on was a large group and very strenuous. Outside of hotels, there are no elevators and lots of steps, stairs and climbing. A Nile cruise is nice but to get to the sites, if you want to go, there is a lot of steep walking, climbing in and out of boats, in and out of carriages, and rough spots. Don't want to discourage you but do plan ahead.
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