Culture & Identity

7 rules to follow in Egypt in order not to get fined or jailed

Egypt is traditionally one of the most popular tourist destinations among residents: acceptable service, relatively low prices, good beaches, sun, many attractions, and from most resorts you can go on an excursion to Israel in one day! That’s just once in Egypt, it is important to remember that a number of things in this strangely treated with increased attention.

Note: most of the listed rules in one form or another are found in most countries, including resort ones. However, given the popularity of Egypt among the inhabitants of Eastern Europe, the Caucasus and Central Asia, it is worth mentioning some things precisely in its focus.

1. Ban on photography


Soldiers are not allowed to be photographed.  |Photo:
Soldiers are not allowed to be photographed. |Photo:

No, you can photograph most things in Egypt. However, due to local regional specifics, it is by no means uncommon to have heavily armed policemen on the street. In large cities, as well as on the borders with resort areas, you can definitely meet the military and their equipment. All of the above is strictly prohibited to film and photograph. If a patrol gets into the frame, then the military will most likely just politely ask to remove everything that was filmed. But if a military convoy appears in the frame of the ill-fated tourist, then serious problems with the law cannot be avoided. At best, it’s a fine. At worst, even an arrest until the circumstances are clarified.

2. The ban on criticism of the authorities


Everything is not as simple as it seems.  |Photo:
Everything is not as simple as it seems. |Photo:

The resorts of Egypt are mostly calm. Largely because today they are carefully guarded. However, visitors should not even try to get into the internal political life of the country. Here it is, frankly, quite stormy. Talking about slippery topics, criticizing the authorities and the Egyptian system is unlikely to end in something bad for a tourist, but if you talk about something like that with the locals and hang yourself, then they may already have problems with the police. The Egyptian state is especially nervous about this in large cities.

3. No swearing


No need to scold.  |Photo:
No need to scold. |Photo:

It is forbidden to swear loudly and publicly in Egypt, including tourists. Such an incident is an occasion for one of the locals to contact the police. In the most difficult cases, you can fly into a fine for disturbing the peace. It is also worth being extra vigilant, some annoying merchants, disappointed that nothing has been bought from them, like to provoke a scandal, and then they themselves complain to the police about a “violent” foreigner.

4. Illicit entry


No need to go without a group.  |Photo:
No need to go without a group. |Photo:

There are a lot of ancient sights in Egypt. Many of them are extremely fragile, as they are thousands of years old. Therefore, it is allowed to approach most of these objects only as part of special groups or accompanied by specialists from among local residents and workers. Unauthorized entry into the territory of historical and cultural sites can easily result in arrest, a fine and expulsion from the country with a restriction on visiting Egypt for several years.

5. Lewd behavior


No need to make noise and behave indecently.  |Photo:
No need to make noise and behave indecently. |Photo:

Egypt is far from the most “hardcore” Muslim country, and the antics of tourists here are tried to be treated as gently as possible. In any case, this rule applies within the boundaries of resort areas. But defiant, outrageous and frankly interfering with the peaceful life of others, behavior in cities or near sights can end not only with a fine, but also with imprisonment (arrest). You need to watch not only how you behave, but also how you dress. It’s definitely not worth walking around naked.

6. Coral damage and removal


Corals are the heritage of Egypt.  |Photo:
Corals are the heritage of Egypt. |Photo:

Any, including unintentional damage to coral plantations in Egypt is a criminal offense. This is because any damage to corals is a serious environmental trauma for the marine ecosystem. In addition, corals are strictly forbidden to be exported from the country. After such a trick, you can end up in an Egyptian prison, get a serious fine and lose the right to enter the country for many years.

7. Drinking alcohol


You can in the hotel!  ¦Photo:
You can in the hotel! ¦Photo:

You can drink under the sheet! Joke. But in Egypt there is indeed a law that criminalizes the use of alcohol. Of course, in practice it is rather formal. However, it is still not worth breaking it. For appearing drunk in a public place, as well as for drinking in public, a hefty fine can fly. Of course, there are some concessions for tourists. However, it is best to drink in special establishments: restaurants, bars and hotels. It’s officially allowed there.

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