Is it safe for an American to go to Egypt?

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Apr 2nd, 2002, 03:41 PM
  #1
Chiara
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Is it safe for an American to go to Egypt?

I have a nile trip planned for next month, but after the rioting against Americans in Cairo yesterday I am extremely concerned about my safety in Egypt. Have any Americans recently returned from Egypt?
 
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Apr 3rd, 2002, 02:25 PM
  #2
Chiara
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I really appreciate your insight. Even If I am a Muslim I still have to worry???
 
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Apr 3rd, 2002, 05:21 PM
  #3
None
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It ssems distorted view. Please be your mind self-composed.
I don't think Egypt is OK country if you are self-organized and well known the country background.

 
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Apr 3rd, 2002, 05:24 PM
  #4
none
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OOPS! I made a fatal mistake in the previouse sentence.
What I am trying to say is that Egypt is OK country if you respect their country.
Sorry for making confusion.

 
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Apr 3rd, 2002, 08:49 PM
  #5
tomeka
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To be fair, the egyptian government works hard to control the militant fanatics in their country. Not all egyptians are like the ones who deliberately crashed flight 990, commited the 9/11 murder attacks, machine gunned dozens of european tourists in Luxor a few years ago, or cheered in the streets and shouted 'bullseye' on 9/11.

There are many many decent muslims in egypt and elsewhere who are revolted by terrorism. We can only hope that they will speak up and become more active in restraining and resisting the fanatics that give islam such a bad name around the world.
 
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Apr 7th, 2002, 08:13 AM
  #6
Yellow
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No, 90 percent of the people in Egypt will be happy to see you, but the other 10 percent will not. Of those 10 percent 1 percent wants you dead, still alot of risk.
 
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Apr 11th, 2002, 04:46 PM
  #7
pat
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Heard on the news that Egypt is doing a big fund raiser to give to the Palestinean suicide bomber`s families. No way would I go there at the present time.
 
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Apr 11th, 2002, 09:18 PM
  #8
hanan
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i just got back from Egypt on March 27th, but I felt perfectly safe, I saw lots of Europeans, but not many Americans, if you are just doing the tour stuff I would encourage you to go, Egypt is a wonderful country with wonderful people!
 
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Apr 12th, 2002, 07:42 PM
  #9
gail
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Who actually knows - most people going will return and say they were safe. Our experience last year (obviously pre 9/11) was that most people we encountered were just trying to make a living off tourism (sometimes with a little added scam for excitement). Whether or not these same people would speak among themselves against Americans is unknown. I doubt most would greet you with a weapon or even an obvious attitude. However, I am not sure how safe I would feel travelling to any part of the Middle East right now. Tough call.
 
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Apr 16th, 2002, 06:12 AM
  #10
xxx
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Just wear a burka and you will be fine.
 
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Apr 17th, 2002, 01:35 PM
  #11
Christi in Houston
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I visited Egypt several years ago on a ladies shopping/cruise trip. My husband was very nervous but we went ahead anyway. It was such a great adventure. We were living in Dubai so were familiar with Muslim countries and cultures. Just be aware of what is expected of foreigners, especially in conservative countries. The locals are soooo very nice. We toured with A & K, a great tour company, and felt completely safe the entire time. The nile cruise is one of my all time highlights of world travel. Remember, the american media is a bit only prints what will sell newpapers ... so sometimes you must take the risk. You will certainly enjoy the visit and have a Stella Export (local beer) for me!
 
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Apr 22nd, 2002, 04:30 PM
  #12
guest
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Recently returned from Egypt and had a marvelous time. Egypt is majestic. Words, pictures, can't quite convey the feeling of being there. The math, science, travel and other skills of the ancient Egyptians is nothing short of impressive. You use all your senses there. The mind gets a work out trying to take in, process and organize thousands of years of history, symbols, stories. The present day Egypt culture and communities are a fascinating combination of old and new.

I found much information and encouragement on these message boards when I was planning my trip to Egypt. And to these I'll add some of my travel tips.

SAFETY. I felt extremely safe, as other have said. They take the protection of tourist very seriously. There were guards and police in evidence, but they did not feel intimidating or as threatening as I had imagined. All Egyptians were welcoming, friendly, had a ready smile. Staff on cruise and hotels couldn't have been pleasanter. On our last full day we slept late owing to the busy schedule of the previous days. I awoke to a call from the tour guide asking if the ship should keep the restaurant open so we could eat breakfast. I declined. When I did happened to stop by the restaurant, I found the staff had saved carefully wrapped plates of breakfast treats for us.

CLOTHES. Definitely bring light cotton and linen clothes. I found cotton slack, loose Capri pants, and light dresses immensely comfortable. Polo and short sleeve shirts served me well. A hat is a must. My easy sprit sneakers were great.

MONEY. ATMs were readily available in Aswan and Luxor. Though I can't say how well they worked. Banks are open day and night so changing money is not a problem. I bought cash and travelers checks. At the Luxor airport you can only exchange cash. Do not count on using credit cards, not good for bargaining and not acceptable most places. Even quite large establishment do not accept travelers checks, typically only banks do. US dollars and Egyptians Pounds are the way to go.

SUNSCREEN. The sun is strong and hot and the common beet red of my fellow travelers was not attractive.

INSULATED WATER BOTTLE. This was a great tip. I obtained one from Target for about $4 or $5 with a zipper so I could fill the bottle supplied or just insert a purchased bottle with ease. My water was always cool and much needed while being in the dry, hot, dusty desert.

FILM. Is readily available. But if you want 400 to 800 speed bring your own.

LUGGUGE. My luggage took a beating but survived. If you have hardside luggage do take it.

FACE TOWELS. Our hotel and cruise was billed as 5 star in Egypt, and we stayed at the Hyatt in Paris. If you want face towels, bring your own.

My local GUIDE was well informed, knowledgeable and welcomed questions. I suspect most guides are well educated, as education is free through the university level.

SUNNYLAND and PARIS. I booked through Sunnyland, which offers a stop in Paris. I had been to Paris before but had forgotten how expensive it was. Unlimited rides on metro for 2 people for 2 days about $64 US. One roundtrip on metro for two about $30 US. This compared to $5 unlimited pass where I live in the US. If you fly to Egypt from Paris, the French are quite rude-the majority pushed and shoved into checkin and boarding lines. In fact they make a triangle, not a line. They were reprimanded by ticket agents but ignored them. These pushers appeared to be 40-65 years old and were well groomed. This said Paris is Paris and you can enjoy the sights or just relaxing at a café.

LUXOR TEMPLE. This is quite at treat when visited at night, say after 7pm. I enjoyed it so much I went back again towards the end of my trip.
 
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Apr 23rd, 2002, 03:43 PM
  #13
Buck
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Why go to countries where they hate us? I have longed to go to Egypt but I will just not go and support a country like Egypt. Our gov. gives them over 2 billion a year of our money and I sure don't see them refusing that. Go to places that like to see the $ being spent to enhance their economy. Let them protest all they want and starve in the tourist areas. IMO, Buck
 
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Apr 23rd, 2002, 10:40 PM
  #14
Linda
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Dear Readers,

I am an American expat living in Cairo. We get frequent security updates through our company. I will paraphrase the latest for you:

Demonstrations are expected to continue, and be particularly careful to stay away from Mosques after the Friday-noon prayer both inside and outside Cairo as well as in some educational institutes. The entrance to the Khan el Kalili is right next to a major mosque. Try to live a normal life, but keep a low profile. We also recommend you to:

1. Keep away from tourist shrines and entertainment places when they are crowded with visitors especially on weekends.
2. Stay away from Cairo downtown on Friday, and at the noon prayers time in particular.
3. Each of you must keep a mobile phone all the time.
4. Avoid the famous US-franchised restaurant chains, based outside Maadi, at daytime.
5. Avoid any provocative actions or gatherings of people.
6. Observe the local traditions concerning clothes regardless of what the Egyptians themselves do.
7. At the time being, there are no specific security concerns about travelling outside Cairo to Hurgada, the Red Sea coast, Sinai, Luxor or Aswan. However, we should all continue avoid travelling to Upper Egypt (from Fayoum downwards to Qena).

 
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Apr 24th, 2002, 06:34 AM
  #15
Margaret
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I was in Egypt in February and Had a WONDERFUL trip! Protection was extradinary, and I always felt safe cruising down the NILE, touring Cairo, and going to Abu Simbel.
 
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Apr 24th, 2002, 11:50 AM
  #16
Jim
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Linda,
Just curious about the Friday noontime prayers. Why is that to be avoided? Is that payday or something?
 
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May 6th, 2002, 09:56 PM
  #17
Linda
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Sorry it took so long to reply to your question. We just got back from Italy (hated it)and wished we had gone back to South Africa. Anyway, the answer to why it it important to avoid mosques on Friday is: Egypt does not have a free press. The Egyptian government is scared to death of the religious fundamentalists, especially after they assassinated Sadat and committed the atrocities at Luxor and the museum. Mosque on Fridays is when the worst of anti-west sentiment is voiced by religious leaders who have no other venue. I understand that the diatribes against the west that you can read in the paper are nothing compared to what is preached. The entrance to the Khan el Khalili is right next door to a major mosque. I never go to the Khan on Fridays.
 
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May 13th, 2002, 09:12 AM
  #18
Jim
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Linda,
Thanks for the insight. I'll make a note to avoid the mosques on Friday afternoons.
 
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