Egypt Local Customs

  • Lunch is ready
    Lunch is ready
    by zanzooni
  • Local Customs
    by globetrott
  • Local Customs
    by globetrott

Egypt Local Customs

  • Dress Codes for Women

    Cairo Local Customs

    The nile river cruise is apparently not only popular with tourists going to egypt as even locals do this as when we were at the cruise, there was a wedding party present and the reception is at the Nile river cruise. the bride were a traditional white wedding dress and since Islam mandates women to wear modest clothes, the bride has her hair and...

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  • ALEXANDRIAN culture

    Alexandria Local Customs

    Alexandria is blessed by a long Corniche, and this, of course, gives rise to a very healthy café culture. In the areas of the city such as Montazah, where there are many tourists and locals who come to enjoy the beaches, you'll find a large number of locales where you can enjoy coffee, tea, juice and backgammon (shesh besh). Many of these places...

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  • Islam

    Cairo Local Customs

    Take caution when traveling to Egypt! Make a honest person you know meet you at the airport, or some trustworthy person! The taxi drivers there will rip you off if you don't know the rates, so keep someone trustworthy with you. There should be a trustworthy person with you all ways there advising you what to do there. Make sure you only talk to...

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  • Bargaining

    Cairo Local Customs

    Bargaining. Us Anglo's just don't get it, do we? In England about the only time we enter into any negotiation over price is when we buy a car or a house. Here' it's different. A love of the deal is part of the Levantine culture. You have to understand, and go along with it. Price is always flexible. In practise everyday items are more or less...

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  • Traffic

    Cairo Local Customs

    The automobile traffic and rules on the roadway in Cairo is unlike any conventional heavy traffic. a. donkeys, camels and donkey drawn carriages hauling garbage share the roads with cars b. the traffic circles are a recipe for disaster as the 4 lanes of unlaned cars merge, change lanes, and exit. c. taxis from the 80's running on egyptian sweat...

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  • Shisha Pipe

    No, I don't smoke! As a matter of fact I'm allergic to tobacco ash. So, I was not tempted to try the shisha pipe, but noticed that, for many people, that was a must do. My hotel in Cairo had a good idea and placed the smoking area in the roof. Nice place to have a pipe, watching the pyramids, or better than that, watch the pyramids without any pipe...

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  • Bargaining

    For a western, not used to this kind of deal, it starts to seem odd. It's rather umcomfortable to offer someone a third or fourth of the price he asked you. But that's the use, and bargaining is not a conflict but almost a social way of fraternization. So don't hesitate:make your (small) offer. And even if the deal fails, you will be more...

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  • The people of Egypt according to Heinz...

    "The people of Egypt are the greatest people on earth and they should deserve the Nobel Prize for Peace".> Austrian President, Heinz Fischer.(this photo shot was taken at Cairo International airport in September 2011).

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  • Walk Like An Egyptian

    %oWalk Like An EgyptianAll the old paintings on the tombs,They do the sand dance don't you know.If they move too quick (oh whey oh),They're falling down like a domino.All the bazaar men by the Nile, They got the money on a bet.Gold crocodiles (oh whey oh), They snap their teeth on your cigarette.Foreign types with the hookah pipes say,Ay oh whey...

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  • General Travel Tip for Egypt

    Egypt is one of the best countries for solo travel. Having said that, for my first time in a country where not only do I not speak the language but can't read it either I would go for the tour option. Once you know how the country operates (as far as tourism is concerned) you can return solo to catch up on the bits you missed. I've been to Egypt 3...

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  • How To Get A Bargain Every Time!

    My tip on bargaining should work for you in many a marketplace, give it a try:When you find an item you like, Think about how much YOU want to pay for it. This will be your maximum price. Always remain calm and polite and playfully answer any questions with a question of your own about the quality or origin of the item, the integrity of the...

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  • How to use money in Egypt.

    About Money in EgyptOn the forum many questions are asked about how you deal with money in Egypt and what you should take with you from home.First of all: Don't buy Traveler Cheques. They are outdated by the ATM Machine and take a lot of hassle either to purchase them and to cash them in Egypt.Take at least 2 Credit Carts of different companies...

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  • BARGAIN...AND BARGAIN HARD! THIS IS A...

    As a Westerner, I am not used to bargaining. As a Westerner who is currently working and living in Japan ( the land of politesse, modesty and silence ), bargaining is almost alien to me. However, when I travel, I adapt immediately and very well to my surrounds and thus, I learned to bargain on my first few days in Cairo ( at the Khan ) and became...

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  • Tea Time in Egypt

    When you are bartering for your trinkets the merchant will most likely offer you a glass of Egyptian tea. You can decline but you'll hear all about the Eyptian hospitality rule where it is his obligation to offer you a drink. If you're not into tea you can ask for a soda and he'll be more than happy to oblige. Shopping is a leisurely activity and...

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  • Islam

    Egypt is mainly a muslim country and you will see mosques everywhere and hear the prayers from there several times a day.Non muslims are welcome to visit the mosques aswell and egyptians are generally very open to outsiders and eager to show them that their religion is not the evil thing some people in other countries tries to make it look like.go...

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  • The Change Game

    Egypt is peculiar in that they don't use coins, only notes, the smallest denomination being 25 piastres. Accumulating and maintaining a supply of small notes, so that you have something smaller than a 50 LE note when trifling baksheesh is required or so that you have the right money to pay for a taxi (Change......you just put your lips together and...

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  • Egyptian Gods - Seth

    God of: intially, the desert, storms, darkness, and chaos.Form: you would not find these features in one animal: a curved snout, square ears, forked tail, and canine body. Sometimes, he was shown as a man with only the head from the list above.Main worship centre: Nubt/Ombos, which is today's Naqada on the west bank of the NileSymbol: the was...

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  • Egyptian Gods - Thoth

    God of: intelligence, mind and wisdom. In later Egyptian mythology, he was 'responsible' for judging of the dead, adjudicating disputes among other gods, magic, science and writing.Form: a man with the head of an ibis or a baboon (ibis head being the better known form)Main worship centre: Khemennu, which was later renamed Hermopolis by the Greeks....

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  • Egyptian Gods - Hathor

    Goddess of: love, motherhood and joy, who was also shown as welcoming the dead into the next life. Form: a woman wearing the headdress of a sun disk and with the cow's horns (also sometimes as a cow with the sun disk)Main worship centre: DenderaSymbol: sistrum (a percussion musical instrument)

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  • Egyptian Gods - Ra

    God of: sun, identified primarily with the mid-day sun, with other gods for other positions. In later times, he was regarded as one with Horus, and even later with Amun. By this time he was considered as master of the sky, the earth, and the underworld.Form: a man with the head of a falcon, with the sun-disk of Wadjet on top of his headMain worship...

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  • Salting your food

    While the locals may be very friendly and forgiving, try to respect their cooking... don't use salt.Egyptians dishes are prepared in the manner that the chef believes they should be, complete with all layers of flavors and spices as needed. If you add salt, you are insulting the chef's preparation and possibly theirs skill in the kitchen as well....

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  • Thought on Tipping

    Hi,Tipping around the world is not like it is in the US for the most part where many of us just add 15-20% just because someone managed to bring our sandwich and cola without dropping it on the floor first. However, in some places tipping can be considered an insult (this is happening less and less though) or unnecessary. As an example, I would...

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  • Baksheesh - tipping in Egypt

    In our ever-reliable Wikipedia, Baksheesh is defined as a term used to describe tipping, charitable giving, and certain forms of political corruption and bribery in the Middle East and South Asia.In Egypt, baksheesh is often requested on top of taxi fares, as service charges to waiters, doormen, shopkeepers, garage attendants, and even just taking...

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  • Black marks on Egyptian men's foreheads

    When I started my first day exploring in Egypt, I was shocked to see this very big black spot on a man's forehead and I wanted to look at it closer because it looked like a melanoma - I was thinking the thing has to be excised! But then, a few minutes later, I see another man with the same dark circular irregular spot...My guide laughed at me and...

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  • Beer

    There are two main Egyptian brands of beer : Stella and Sakkara. Stella is the oldest of the two. Both brands are produced by Al Ahram Beverages Company, which is now owned by Heineken. I hadn't had a drink in about 2 months before having a Stella, so it is my marginal favourite.

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  • Smoking and Sheesha

    In Egypt, part of the culture as a way of socializing involves smoking Sheesha (tobacco from a waterpipe), and drinking tea (Chai). Sheesha and tea is a way of life, streets all over Egypt are lined with coffee and tea houses, (Ahwas and/or Cafes).It is also not unusual to see a cab driver smoking a cigarette in your cab. Most drivers are not...

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  • Is Egypt safe to be openly gay?

    I've travelled to Egypt a few years ago. I did not out myself while there because I was aware of the social bias against homosexuality. So when I spoke to locals, I didn't out myself because I wasn't there long enough to get a feel for the place. I had a terrific conversation in the Bazaar in Cairo once with a very nice family of two kids. We...

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  • Welcoming Ramadan

    Cairo as well as most other cities in Egypt..welcome the holy month of Ramadan by decorating the streets & buildings with lights & lamps...in Arabic we call a lamp (Fanoos).The story goes back to the old days,long before alarm clocks, a Muslims usually have two meals in Ramadan,one to break his fasting at sunset,and the other before sunrise..The...

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  • Dukkah

    Dukkah is a dish that originated in the Middle East. It's a mixture that best resembles bird seed. All you do is take some bread and dip it in extra virgin olive oil and then dip the wet end into the Dukkah. Coriander, cumin, and sesame are the first thing you notice, followed by the ground peanuts. Traditional Dukkah is also added to roasted,...

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  • Baksheesh (Tipping)

    Baksheesh at the Pyramids is the worst. They wanted Baksheesh for any and everything. Baksheesh is less in the Sinai. Should you tip, take into account the cost of living in Egypt, not the cost of living back home. Remember the average income in Egypt is 350 Egyptian pounds a month, about $65 USD or 45 Euros. This comes out to about $3.25 USD a day...

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  • Dress in Egypt

    Well in Sharm al Sheikh NO restrictions - I even saw topless sunbathers although they did attract quite a following of eager young men staring.In Cairo, Alexandria and all other places there are really so many tourists now that short sleeves and shortish shorts aren't frowned upon.That said, I did encounter a few old men who said things in Arabic...

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  • The Friday Praying Time

    The Friday Pray will be around 11-12 noon. All the Egyptian Moslem men will go to the mosque for the pray and it may block the streets. Try to adjust your time so you do not travel to the alleys or the settlement areas during the Friday praying time. Respect the prayers. The noise should be cut off during the praying time. Furthermore, some...

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  • FOOTBALL MANIA

    The Egyptians are football mania and they will never miss their national team games. The red color, their national team uniform will be the sacred one on the game time. During the game time, you will see many people in the coffee shops, on the streets, and the restaurants are watching the game. You could see the empty front desk hotels too because...

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  • THE NICE PEOPLE

    The first day of our tour in Giza with numerous hassles, begging, and money extortion instantly build the negative image of Egyptian people. After staying there for more days, finally we can see the nice people of Egypt. The ones with their hospitality and generosity; the ones with their prides of being the citizen of where the civilization...

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  • Dress code

    You can't hide as a tourist in Egypt. They will know.Depending on where you are going some dress code is being respected by the local people.Sharm or Hurghada has seen it all and will allow everything even topless sunbathing. But, as said, they will not respect you for it!Luxor and Aswan are more conservative places but used to tourists, they have...

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  • Call to Prayer

    A muezzin makes the call to prayer 5 times each day from the balcony of a mosque's minaret. Loudpeakers and microphones are used to allow the broadcast to be heard further. The sound echoes from every corner of the city.

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  • Tipping (Baksheesh)

    Tipping is a big part of Egyptian income. Everyone, from street kids to seniors will ask for it and will do so quite bluntly. You should not feel bad ignoring them, when the tip is not earned.ADVICES WHILE TIPPING:- do not use foreign coins, because they can be exchanged into Egyptian money only in Cairo.- always carry small Egyptian notes with...

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  • Baksheesh !!!

    Baksheesh ....You will learn the word very fast when you travel to Egypt. The country runs on baksheesh & everything runs better when you have baksheesh . There is some skill for baksheesh & it require judgement. Do not baksheesh everything because many people ask for ridiculous baksheesh without a reason. The worst case is they force you to...

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  • A Greeting

    ♫•:*¨`*:•Sana Helwa YaGamil♫Sana Helwa YaGamil♫♫Sana Helwa YaHabiby♫ Sana Helwa YaGamil•:*¨`*:•♫♫ It is the melody of a birthday or a new year greeting in Arabic: I may be sure you have already found the whole relavant vocabulary on my home page; however I'll help you once more here to get the...

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  • covering up

    yes girls you do have to cover up or you will be ogled and touched, this is hard to do because it get's so hot the last thing you want to do is put more on. When you go to a lot of temples and places of worship, you are expected to have your shoulders covered, but they will give you cloak's to wear which makes for a great travel photo if they...

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  • Tipping in Egypt

    Baksheesh -Tip Guide Boab (doorman) – LE50-100. For this he should take the trash out from the hallway, keep the stairwell clean, wash your vehicle, runs errands and help you carry groceries, etc. to your apartment. Pay a little more if he walks the dog.Security Guard – You will probably have 2 guards pay is LE20-25.Gas Station Attendant - LE1-3...

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  • Celebrating the Haj

    Making the pilgrimage to Makka is on of the five pillars of Islam. Those who have made the pilgimage often celebrate this by painting images representing the pilgrimage on their house. (The Koran does not ban the making of all representational images. Landscapes and buildings are fine)

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  • Tourist police

    From the moment you arrive anywhere in Egypt till you leave...in hotels, checkpoints, museums, tourist spots, bazaars, airports, etc...you shall see these uniformed security personnel in white uniforms and black caps that provide some sense of safety for visitors.

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  • The gas man cometh

    Most people in Egypt use bottled gas to cook with. The gas is sold by men who announce their presence by beating out a cheerful tattoo with a spanner or the like on the gas bottles. A common sound in backstreet Egypt.

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  • The Nubian Culture-The Descendants of...

    Tired of Egypt? A bit jaded from all the Middle East like atmosphere and culture? Then go to Nubia! They're African-Egyptian descendents and they used to be descendents of the Pharoahs and they're very PROUD of their culture. They dominate parts of Sudan and the Southern Egypt. One good, easy (not so expens way of seeing Nubia is taking a Nubian...

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Egypt Local Customs

Reviews and photos of Egypt local customs posted by real travelers and locals. The best tips for Egypt sightseeing.
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