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Back from 10 days in Egypt - an interesting story!

Perth, Australia
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11 posts
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Back from 10 days in Egypt - an interesting story!

Well, what an amazing place - I would say a 'must do' along with an African safari for everyone.

I won't go through day for day however I will say that anyone visiting Egypt must have an open mind and expect to be harrassed and ripped off! This is all part of the culture though. Cairo was awful, ugly, smelly and disturbing (largely towards animals)! However, the pyramids, sphinx, memphis, sakara , museum etc etc more than makes it worthwhile staying for a few days.

A 'funny' little story, you can't take a bag in to the museum so we were told to leave it in the car under the safe guard of the tour driver - he was the only one who would have access to the car. Anyway, we came back to the car and my phone and other femine items had been taken, including a mirror (what the??!!) ! depsite it being 100% him and only him, he denied it. We complained formally to the tour company as our major concern was we were on the start of a 7 week OS holiday and this being the only method of contact with a sick family member back home. If only it was easy enough to buy a phone - of course not as it was all in Egyptian therefore we could not use it in Europe a week later! Anyway, we just wanted the phone back and pushed and pushed for it - we even offered $50AUD for it back!! (of course it would have changed hands 10 times since then)....then it turned nasty. We could make a formal police statement however we found we were strongly 'encouraged' not to do this - quite amusing and still scary. Imagine my hunsband and I sitting in a room of 5 men and our female tour guide, all shouting arabic with two guys behind my husband twirling their guns in their hands and another 10 cms in front of me (and pointing at me) on the table! Needless to say, we shakily signed something that we would not make a formal statement or take it any further as it would mean bad news for this well known tour company (the fact that the driver can blatantly steal things and it's not fixed by the company) and this person would be 'severely punished' and will never work in Cairo again!! ....I just wanted my phone...none of that other stuff!!!

Anyway, leaving Cairo for a 6 day cruise was the highlight - you really must do this is visiting Egypt. cruising the Nile is I believe was Egypt is truly about. Once again, take everything with a pinch of salt and you will love it! (ha ha...including our tour guide insisting we give him $100USD pp additional to all costs to pay for 'tips' along the way!!...unbelieveable)...once again....all part of the same tour company!.

My highlights include: seeing the largest for the pyramid for the first time took my breath away....I was a little teary having the honour of seeing it. Valley of the Kings, the various temples down the isle. the boat men throwing bags and clothing up at the boat as we sailed in towards the loch. I must say, after the interesting experience two days earlier in Cairo, we were a bit on edge - we sailed in to this in the late afternoon and we were snoozing with the window open. Imagine the fright we got when we awoke to a rope coming through or window at the same time as fierce screaming below...ha ha....I have to laugh...once again. It was totally harmless - they try and latch on to the boat so they can sell things...I thought we were being hijacked by pirates!

An amazing place!

Would love to know if what happened to us with the theft is standard' though

Cairo, Egypt
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101 posts
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1. Re: Back from 10 days in Egypt - an interesting story!

That is shocking!

I totally emphasis with you as I remember some similar episodes as a tourist here. I now am wise and residential so I don't get these hassles,fortunately.

The tour company and guide need to be named and shamed.

Knoxville, Tennessee
Destination Expert
for Pigeon Forge
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1,069 posts
61 reviews
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2. Re: Back from 10 days in Egypt - an interesting story!

Why would you not tell us which travel company you were using? This is the type of info that readers of TA boards need to help others learn from our own travel experiences.

Otherwise your post only serves to scare those traveling to Egypt for the first time and quite honestly will cause some to doubt the story.

Share the name of the tour company to help others who may fall into the same trap.

Gottagocit

Motherwell
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261 posts
20 reviews
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3. Re: Back from 10 days in Egypt - an interesting story!

Gosh..............poor you what an experience. Glad you shared it, will make me careful about what I take to Cairo on our day trip.

What company so I can avoid it?

Australia
Destination Expert
for Cairo, Egypt, Nile River Valley, Luxor
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8,062 posts
57 reviews
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4. Re: Back from 10 days in Egypt - an interesting story!

I agree with the others, you need to name the travel Company, this is not a "normal" experience. Is this a new rule? I have always taken my small backpack into museum just had to go through the inspection and xray first. You are not allowed cameras and they will check for that but handbags etc were fine. You should definitely complain in writing, they take tourist complaints very seriously.

Perth, Australia
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11 posts
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5. Re: Back from 10 days in Egypt - an interesting story!

Hi,

wasn't meaning to scare anyone - it is an amazing place that must be experienced (just don't be too shocked).

The tour we had was "splendours of Egypt" through the tour company booked in Aus called Adventure World - I presume though this is then 'outsourced' to an independent tour company in Egypt (?). The lady tour guide was quite helpful and we later found out (after he had been threatened) that the driver was a 'fill-in' however, they still would not accept or take ownership of it. We had wasted so much time and energy being fustrated about it whilst there that we didn't actually ring Aus travel company to complain - we basically HAD to 'agree' we would leave it as is when we were in that room. My main frustration following was one of us feeling as though we were in trouble and the fact that we spent probably 2 days being distracted by it (oh and the wasted money). :)

Like I said, this is not something to keep anyone away from Egypt - just watch your back. It must be so frustrating to see foreigners carrying more possessions than many would have in a lifetime. Just use your safe, don't leave anything in the absolute 'trust' of other people (despite the tour guide insisting over and over it would be fine). I think the fellow on the boat cruise asking for extra 'tip' money up front is also quite standard however definitely put everyone on the wrong side from the start.

England
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731 posts
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6. Re: Back from 10 days in Egypt - an interesting story!

Your story is so different from the experiances I have had in Egypt, my daughter once left her brand new phone on a coach but there driver returned with it. Many times things have been left only to find someone chasing you down the street to give it back. I have always found them to be honest people.

Melbourne, Australia
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45 posts
4 reviews
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7. Re: Back from 10 days in Egypt - an interesting story!

sasha001.

i would report it to your travel agent and adventure world. they have a right to know.

if you had travel insurance you shuld be able to claim lose of phone (and other items).

Des moines
5 posts
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8. Re: Back from 10 days in Egypt - an interesting story!

When visiting Cairo or any part of Egypt, how safe are you...or the question should be, “do you feel safe”?. And are American’s welcome there? And as for my wife, what customs or traditions should she be aware of, so to fit it?

Can we venture off the beaten path, like the world famous Cairo Open Air Market and shopping?

Ocean115

9. Re: Back from 10 days in Egypt - an interesting story!

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