We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

last minute decision and a question...

Jacksonville...
Level Contributor
11 posts
1 review
Save Topic
last minute decision and a question...

I leave in 7 weeks for Egypt and I use credit cards VERY little. I intend to use debit or cash. This makes it very important for me to have enough money. I'm on a private tour where the room and almost all meals are paid for already.

Any guidelines for a daily amount of money I may need to take.

Also, trying to decide on sleeper train v/s flying. I've added a lot of extra's and feel I would like to save a bit on hotels by doing the train but I"m concerned about motion sickness. Anyone have motion sickness on the trains?

Any other tips I can't find on forums are also welcome!

Australia
Destination Expert
for Cairo, Egypt, Nile River Valley, Luxor
Level Contributor
7,599 posts
57 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: last minute decision and a question...

Hi, I've been on the train twice and never suffered from motion sickness. The train is fine and you do save money by not having to fork out for a hotel for one night.

The only problem imo with the train is that it can be delayed. However on both my journeys it was late by no longer than one hour (some have reported longer delays).

The food is truly awful, so bring your own snacks and drinks.

As far as money, that is a hard one but I never use my credit card. If most of your meals ar paid for and you are not going to splash out shopping, you can get by on very little in Egypt. Use ATM's and withdraw every few days.

Last year I was on a budget and budgeted for $30 (180LE) a day and had enough for 2 meals, taxis, tipping etc. Eating at the hotels is more expensive and the water is also 5 times the price of water outside. As an example I paid between 18.5 and 23LE for a fast food meal, 3LE for a 1.5Lt water and 5LE for a can of soft drink ouside of the hotel..

Spokane, Washington
Destination Expert
for Spokane, Chelan
Level Contributor
10,362 posts
42 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: last minute decision and a question...

Trains rarely make anyone have motion sickness so I'm sure you'll be okay there. If you are going on a slim limited budget then the train is a good idea, look at the various hotels on TA to find one that fits your needs, hostels would be cheap enough for you so look at those to.

Collie

Indianapolis...
Level Contributor
180 posts
516 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: last minute decision and a question...

I would take a couple of credit cards and know your PIN numbers. I returned from Egypt the first week of April and my debit card would not work at any ATM machine (Giza, down town Cairo, Luxor). It wouldn't work no matter which withdrawal selection I choose on the screen. Maybe I was doing something wrong and maybe you will have better luck, but I would take the credit cards just in case.

Contact your financial institutions before you leave and let them know you will be using your cards (credit and debit) in Egypt (and any other country that you plan on visiting or if you have a layover); otherwise, they may deem the transactions as suspicious and cut off your card. Also, check what your cash limit is for withdrawals on your credit cards.

90% of stores, hotels, restaurants, and shops don't have the equipment to process a card, so you will need cash. Split your cash up so it is not in one place too. I had an encounter with a couple of kids in Aswan that tried to pick pocket me.

Spokane, Washington
Destination Expert
for Spokane, Chelan
Level Contributor
10,362 posts
42 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: last minute decision and a question...

Zebra, yes the first thing to do before leaving the country is to contact your banks and let them know where you are going however that doesn't always solve the problem twice in two different countries one of my banks did that to me but I was savvy enough to take more then one card with me.

On my trip to Egypt last month my traveling companion only had one card with her and twice she was turn down even though she had contacted her bank.

Moral of story always contact your bank about a week before you leave and take more than one banks card with you.

Collie

Indianapolis...
Level Contributor
180 posts
516 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: last minute decision and a question...

I contacted my bank when I returned and they had no explanation as to why the debit card didn't work. I remembered the cash withdrawal limit when I was in Luxor and my card was declined. I'm glad I had the back up credit card!!

Ontario canada
Level Contributor
6 posts
26 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: last minute decision and a question...

Just returned - we brought US dollars - used less than we thought as Egyptian pounds worked better - and the people getting tips etc , small purchases would not get a very good exchange on small amounts of US. We had very little problem with debit / credit cards - used credit for some purchaes and meals - if one bank machine did not work - the next one would

Jacksonville...
Level Contributor
11 posts
1 review
Save Reply
7. Re: last minute decision and a question...

thanks everyone:) I knew about notifying our bank and plan to carry a mix of cash and 3 different cards. I am going ahead wih the train too. I'll update when I return early July.

Killarney, Ireland
Level Contributor
191 posts
10 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: last minute decision and a question...

We took the sleeper train last June and enjoyed the experience the room are compact but quite comfortable, no motion sickness whatsoever it was good fun, no alcohol sold on board but we had one or two tipples that we got in duty free on way to Egypt. We had dinner before we got train as we were told food was not great, no delays maybe few minutes, the breakfast was in a box but we were hungry and enjoyed it. Its a much cheaper option as well, you as we will enjoy the experience and meet some nice people, enjoy and safe trip.

9. Re: last minute decision and a question...

-:- Message from TripAdvisor staff -:-

This topic has been closed to new posts due to inactivity. We hope you'll join the conversation by posting to an open topic or starting a new one.

To review the TripAdvisor Forums Posting Guidelines, please follow this link: http://www.tripadvisor.com/pages/forums_posting_guidelines.html

We remove posts that do not follow our posting guidelines, and we reserve the right to remove any post for any reason.

Removed on: 19 June 2013, 08:46