Cairo Airport and Money Advice
Cairo Airport and Money Advice Reviews
Cairo Airport Taxi Problems and General Money Advice Jan 13, 2010
Cairo is without a doubt my favourite city in the Islamic World. Taxi drivers are notorious in any country, and Cairo is no exception. The two scams I encountered are:
1. Airport Arrival. When you arrive at Cairo International Airport early in the morning it can be very disorientating as hecklers gather circle you. Go to one of the limousine booking desks, and decide on a price for a Taxi. It should be between £60-£70 Egyptian pounds. When you arrive at your destination, the driver will ask for more money. In my case claiming he had no change for a £200 note. Then he said it was a tip and ‘this is Egypt’. It was 3am and he threatened to drive off if I didn’t pay, my bags being held hostage in the car’s boot. While not that much money, it leaves a bitter taste in your mouth. I was prepared and intending to pay £100, and we were chatting friendly all the way to the destination. Make sure you have close to the correct amount of money, be confident, give the money, then get out. After this incident I had no trouble travelling around Cairo by taxi daily, never paying over £20. NEVER ask how much! Just pay and get out - £20 is double what locals pay anyway.
2. Smaller Currency. When you are given change, make sure that you get it in Egyptian pounds, and not the smaller denomination of currency. I was mugged of a £50 Egyptian pound note this way – in a mosque! It was the mosque by a city gate and I paid to get on the roof. While not much money to the tourist, again, being the victim of malicious intent leaves a bitter feeling.
Saying all that, I still love Egypt and Cairo and want to return with my new found skillz. If you hate being hassled, take a guided tour of Egypt, they’re quite cheap with Intrepid and Oasis. For worse hassle go to Morocco – yikes! For no hassle what-so-ever go to Syria.
Part of the The Pyramids - Thirteen of Them travel blog
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