It’s a staple on pretty much all of our bucket lists thanks to iconic tourist locations like the Pyramids at Giza and the immeasurable allure of the Nile River, but the question is, can I travel to Egypt? The Northern Africa country opened its borders to international travel last summer with plenty of conditions attached so if you’re interested in cruising the Nile River in Egypt, the good news is you won’t have to wait much longer.
Here’s what you need to know about traveling to Egypt!
Egypt Travel Restrictions
The good news is everyone can visit Egypt, but there are quite a few travel restrictions you need to know about. The first and most important thing is a negative COVID-19 test within 72 hours of travel. For those hopping on a plane from Japan, China, Thailand, North America, South America, Canada, London, Paris, and Frankfurt, the 72 hour deadline is extended to 96 hours.
Here’s where it gets tricky; the negative test certificate must be written in English or Arabic and it must be stamped by an accredited lab. Digital copies of negative test WILL NOT be accepted so make sure you have your hard copies ready to go. Children under the age of 6 are exempt from testing requirements.
Upon arrival, visitors must complete a personal health card detailing if they’ve had any symptoms and they must provide proof of insurance. The Egyptian government also requires an e-visa which you can fill out HERE. The form must be filled out at least 7-days prior to departure and does come with a fee. You will receive an email when the visa application has been approved.
There is one more COVID-19 PCR test required upon arrival and guests must quarantine until the results of that test are known. If you’re visiting the country for a Nile River cruise, make sure you get to the country with enough time to get those results back prior to embarkation.
When You Get There
Masks are mandatory. We repeat, masks are mandatory. If you’re using public transportation or taxi cabs, or in any enclosed public space like a restaurant or hotel, masks need to be on. Those who break the rules are subject to fines and/or prosecution from the government. All large functions like weddings have been cancelled indefinitely and businesses are required to operate at 50% capacity or less.
COVID-19 testing is available in Egypt for foreigners via the Egyptian government, but it comes with a pretty hefty fee: 1,680 Egyptian Pounds which is around $107 U.S. Dollars. There are also private testing facilities which offer tests at steeper costs.
Cruising the Nile River in Egypt
There are several cruise lines on the cusp of embarking Cairo, including a Viking River Cruises ship slated for August 20th. Avalon Waterways, AmaWaterways, Uniworld Cruises and Lindblad Special Expeditions are also scheduled to sail the famous Nile River between September and October with a laundry list of dates to choose from.
If you’ve ever wanted to stand at the base of the Great Sphinx of Giza or the Valley of the Kings, the opportunity is there for the taking!