Many people considering booking a holiday to Egypt may, quite rightly, have some concerns and questions about visiting the country at the moment. We have made some notes below which will hopefully be informative and helpful.
Note - this page is meant to provide a guide only and we have intentionally not gone into great detail about individual events or political considerations which may be subject to rapid change. Links are provided to further resources at the end of the page.Please contact us if you have any specific questions relating to an existing tour booking, or a tour itinerary that you are interested in.
Egypt can be considered in several different geographical areas when it comes to both tourism, and recent troubles and demonstrations.
Elections to the lower house of parliament took place at the start of 2012 with a high turnout and long queues to vote. There were a few minor incidents but in general the process went smoothly and peacefully. The upper house was also elected later though with a much lower turnout. Presidential elections were held successfully in June 2012 after some delays due to a very close count with Mohamed Morsi who was backed by the Islamist Muslim Brotherhood party proving the victor. The elections to the lower house were ruled unconstitutional in July 2012 and the parliament dissolved. Following the removal of President Morsi the process has been restarted to re-write the constitution and call new elections.
Since we re-started taking travellers to Egypt back in March 2011 until the end of June 2013, we had to make very few revisions to our travellers' itineraries either before they travel, or while they are in Egypt.
Our travellers' safety is absolutely our top priority, and we will re-arrange itineraries, cancel sections of a tour, or cancel an entire booking if we feel that we can not run the tour safely. Over the last two years our Egyptian team has gained a lot of experience in both analaysing the situation on the ground and reacting to developments and making adjustments to itineraries. We will continue to act on and build on this experience.
As a company that specialises in travel to Egypt, we also have a responsibility to our Egyptian team of office staff, guides and representatives. The last two years have been a very tough time for the tourist industry in Egypt, and we want to support it as much as possible. We therefore need to strike a balance between providing flexibility to our customers, and also ensuring we try to send as many travellers to Egypt as possible. Our visitors to Egypt since the 2011 revolution have almost unanimously returned with rave reviews about their experiences and the reception they have received by the Egyptian people (some sample reviews from recent travellers are given below.
We understand that cancellation rules can sometimes be confusing, and have made some notes below that will hopefully be helpful. All bookings are covered by our standard booking conditions though we do try to be flexible with these, and often relax cancellation/rebooking rules in exceptional circumstances. As a UK company, we make decisions based on our local team's knowledge of the situation on the ground, and also always follow the travel advice provided by the UK Foreign Office...
"No restrictions". Under this standard advice, we will run our tours as normal, but may make minor adjustments to itineraries based on our own decisions about the situation on the ground. Our standard cancellation fees will be charged if travellers wish cancel their own tours due to personal concerns about visiting the country, or if they are not happy with the minor amendments we may be making.
"Avoid all but essential travel to part(s) of the country". Under this raised level of advice, our decisions about tour bookings will depend on the part(s) of the country affected. We may well consider that there is no reason to make any changes to your tour (for example, if the travel advice only specifies Alexandria, and your tour does not visit that city, then no changes are required). If we re-arrange a small portion of a tour itinerary then we will make similar alternative arrangements for that portion without extra charge (for example an amended city tour in and around Cairo that may miss the Egyptian Museum but take in some other sites that may otherwise not have been visited. Or, the use of an alternate Red Sea resort such as Hurghada instead of Dahab). Again, our standard cancellation fees will be charged if travellers wish cancel their own tours due to personal concerns about visiting the country, or if they are not happy with the minor amendments we may be making. If we have to make significant changes (eg. missing out or changing over half the itinerary), then our travellers will be given the option to cancel and receive a refund if they wish, or to transfer to a later date or another tour.
"Avoid all but essential travel to whole country". If the Foreign Office travel advice reaches this level, then we will cancel our tour departures to the country. We will offer people booked with us to travel during the period covered either a full refund, a transfer of the same booking to another date, or an alternative tour to another destination.
Customers who have or have not booked their flights with us.
Throughout the process, we aim to stay in touch with our customers as much as possible. We will balance your concerns with our commitment to support tourism in Egypt, and will always try to be as fair and flexible as possible. This may include reducing cancellation fees, extending booking transfer arrangements, and discounting re-booking costs.
We understand that travellers booking from outside the UK may be receiving slightly different travel advice from their own government's Foreign Office or State Department, and that their travel insurance cover may depend on that advice.
In situations where conflicting official advice is causing concern, we try to be as flexible as possible. This may mean offering reduced cancellation fees or amended or no cancellation charges for changes of date that may not be required for UK customers. We do ask our non-UK customers however, to understand that we are a UK company and operate under UK law, and can not have completely separate policies and conditions for every nationality that travels with us.
Non UK residents may be able to purchase their travel insurance from a UK based company that will provide cover that is based on UK government advice.
Some sample feedback from travellers on a range of different tours throughout the country is given below.
Steve Davies - UK - Splendours of the Nile - 27 Oct 2012
"Our family had a magical experience in Egypt thanks to Egypt Uncovered. Thank you. Maged made our holiday."
Peter Luckens - UK - Long Nile Cruise & Tailor-made - 31 Oct 2012
"Great company for planning & providing tailor-made holiday and dealing with particular requests."
Natalie Stafferton - UK - Temples, Tombs & Pyramids - 18 Oct 2012
"An exciting tour, discovering another culture with enough free time to make it relaxing. Nothing was too much trouble and we had an amazing time."
John & Diane Davis - UK - Grand Egyptian Adventure - 13 Oct 2012
"An extremely good tour, all representatives/Egyptologists were friendly, helpful + very knowledgeable. Good value for money and will definitely use you again."
Christine Leung - UK - Splendours of the Nile - 6 Sep 2012
"Egypt Uncovered exceeds all my expectation in all levels of services. Their local reps & Egyptologists are professional, knowledgeable, down-to-earth with a sense of humor which made us feel very well taken care of in this country of great history. Thanks for bottom of my heart for wonderful memory of this trip with my sister."
Rhett Marison - UK - Egypt Uncovered - 9 Sep 2012
"Booking was simple and efficient. We had a fabulous time all round, guides were knowledgeable, friendly and experienced. The value for money was extraordinary and everyone attached to the company was interesting and helpful! We recommend this trip to anyone with an interest in Egyptology and/or is after a good time!"
Steve & Valerie Hinchee - USA - Grand Egyptian Adventure - 8 Sep 2012
"We had the best time. All the reps & guides were warm & lovely people who welcomed us and made sure we were comfortable everywhere we went. The pyramids were as awe inspiring as I had imagined, the tombs interesting, the Red Sea & desert unforgettable. As an American, meeting so many kind & generous Muslim people helped me to understand the world better"
Renata Azevedo - Brazil - Custom Temples Tombs & Pyramids - 13 Sep 2012
"Egypt Uncovered was so professional and helped us in everything we needed (organising the tour with flexibility). We felt safe all the time and had a wonderful time."
Cinnamen Johnson - Australia - Egypt and Jordan Adventure - 21 Sep 2012
"The best holiday I've ever experienced! The guides made me feel so safe as a woman traveller. They were passionate and knowledgeable making every moment fun and flexible. I highly recommend this tour company. Thanks for making my dreams come true."
UK Foreign Office Advice for Egypt (avoid travel to North Sinai - not visited on any of our tours)
Short guide about the pros and cons of boat diving.
Detailed look at the various courses offered by PADI.
Helpful guide to divers with non-PADI qualifications.
Useful information about whether diving is right for you and what to expect.
Medical questionnaire designed to highlight any existing problems that might affect you while diving.
Short guide about the pros and cons of shore diving.
"Excellent, very helpful pre-sales service"
"The food on board the felucca was tasty and plentiful, no problem if you're a vegetarian."
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Egypt Uncovered (Uncover the World Ltd), Head office: Teazle House, Sunnybank Mills, Town Street, Farsley, Pudsey, West Yorkshire, LS28 5UJ
Phone: +44 (0) 845 130 48 49 Fax: +44 (0) 845 130 48 84
Office Hours: Mon-Fri 09:00-18:00, Sat 09:30-12:30. Registered in the UK: 5363502
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