Egyptian tour operators


Feb 9th, 2004, 05:14 AM
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Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 28
Egyptian tour operators


I'm trying book a two day private guided trip to Cairo from El Gouna. Will be in El Gouna for a week, and to save money I'm trying to get the Cairo tour directly from an egyptian tour operator.

Of the 20 or so offers I've received, the many are 150-200 USD, with bus travel, 4 star hotel and private guided tours. Is this too much?

And more importantly, has anyone heard of A.T.A. Travel & Service Holidays, Orbit Tours or Egyptian Travel Service???

I don't mind paying for quality, but I do dislike getting ripped off...

HunterGatherer is offline  
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Feb 9th, 2004, 05:45 AM
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Check out -

Egyptian Connections

You'll have to search for their site addresses (I don't have them handy) but both are in-country Egyptian tour operators.

The prices you quoted don't seem to be too high - they cover your bus travel, 2-nts hotel room (proably with breakfast), fee for the guide, also a driver, and an air conditioned vehicle and petrol; also entry fees (usually not expensive, but) where required to sites.
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Feb 9th, 2004, 03:44 PM
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 70
I would stay away from Egyptian Connections unless you can get absolute confirmation for your itinerary - meaning hotel names, hotel and tour vouchers and flight coupons. We used them recently for Egypt and had problems with their services.

I called our agent at Egyptian Connections several times the week before we were to leave in order to make sure no changes or substitutions had been made to our itinerary. I wanted to make sure our families could reach us if needed and had been concerned because we had not received much in the way of paperwork - only a laser printed itinerary and our JFK to CAI plane tickets. No cruise, hotel or tour vouchers, no internal plane tickets/flight #s/times, nothing. He assured us everything was taken care of, and not to worry.

When we arrived in CAI after 24 hours of traveling, we were met by a guide who told us that our entire itinerary had been changed and that we would be flying immediately to Luxor instead of starting the trip in Cairo as planned. No reason was given - each person we spoke with claimed to have no idea why this had happened. No replacement itinerary was ever given to us, despite several requests over several days. As this was over the holidays, we were unable to contact our agent, so we just went along with the tour, calling and emailing our families along the way to let them know where we would be each night since the itinerary, hotels and # nights in some of the cities had changed.

All in all, the trip was a good one, but the unexpected changes and inability of anyone to give us a revised itinerary really irritated us. Plus, some of our pre-trip planning went down the drain due to the changes. All we ever got from our tour agents was "don't worry, don't worry" - very, very frustrating.

To be fair, we did meet another couple who had booked with Egyptian Connections, and they had no problems. They even received a packet containing vouchers and all air tickets prior to their departure. Also, after the tour was over, I went through the original itinerary and noted that everything they said we would see, we saw. The tours themselves were wonderful, the guides were knowledgeable.

However, don't trust that any of the shops they take you to have real granite, basalt, lapis lazuli, malachite, papyrus, etc. We later discovered from other sellers that there's very little real granite/basalt statuary for sale in the tourist areas, and semi-precious statues the size of a tennis ball should be costing upwards of $600 USD rather than the $35-$40 they are selling for. The stuff they're selling is all resin.

If you're looking for an Egyptian tour company, Blue Sky Travel is who handled our tours. I think you can find them online. Have fun!
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