Foreign travel advice, Egypt

The Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO) advises against all travel to:

  • the Governorate of North Sinai
  • within 20km of the Egyptian and Libyan border. This excludes the town of El Salloum (where we continue to advise against all but essential travel).

The FCDO advises against all but essential travel to:

  • the northern part of the Governorate of South Sinai beyond the St Catherine-Nuweibaa road. This excludes the coastal areas on the western and eastern part of the peninsula, between the Suez crossing, and Taba with the southern part of the Governorate of South Sinai.
  • the eastern part of Ismailiyah governorate east of the Suez canal
  • the area west of the Nile Valley and Nile Delta regions, excluding:
    • the Governorate of Faiyum
    • the coastal areas between the Nile Delta and Marsa Matruh
    • the Marsa Matruh-Siwa Road
    • the oasis town of Siwa
    • the Giza Governate northeast of the Bahariya Oasis
    • the road between Giza and Farafra, and within 50km either side of this road (not including the road between Bahariya Oasis and Siwa).
  • the road between Al Bawiti to Siwa
  • the Hala’ib Triangle
  • the Bir Tawil Trapezoid

Before you travel, check the ‘Entry requirements’ section for Egypt’s current entry restrictions and requirements. These may change with little warning. Monitor this advice for the latest updates and stay in contact with your travel provider.

If you plan to pass through another country to return to the UK, check the travel advice for the country you’re transiting.

It is more important than ever to get travel insurance and check it provides sufficient cover. See the FCDO’s guidance on foreign travel insurance.

Egyptian-Sudanese border

There continues to be reports of large numbers of people attempting to cross the border into Egypt. There are two main land border crossings between Egypt and Sudan, at Qustul and Argeen. The nearest town in Sudan to the crossings is Wadi Halfa (30km from border).

We do not have a permanent presence at the Egyptian border and our ability to provide consular assistance is very limited. If you are a British national planning to cross into Egypt at Argeen or Qustul and you do not have valid documentation with you, please contact the British Embassy in Cairo on + 2 (02) 2791 6000.

Travel within Sudan is conducted at your own risk. There is almost no infrastructure at these border crossings and individuals are currently waiting several days to transit the border, with very limited access to food and water.

Also read the Sudan travel advice.

If you are now in Egypt and need consular assistance, such as an emergency travel document, contact the British Embassy in Cairo on + 2 (02) 2791 6000.

An estimated 500,000 British nationals visited Egypt in 2022. Most visits are trouble free.

Terrorists are very likely to try to carry out attacks in Egypt. There is considered to be a heightened threat of terrorist attack globally against UK interests and British nationals, from groups or individuals motivated by the conflict in Iraq and Syria.

Although most attacks occur in North Sinai, there remains a risk of terrorist attacks across the country. Attacks could be indiscriminate. Targets might include Egyptian security forces, religious sites, large public gatherings and places visited by foreigners. There is a heightened threat of terrorist attacks in or around religious sites and during religious festivals, such as the month of Ramadan and the Christmas period (including Coptic Christmas on 7 January), when terrorist groups have sometimes called for attacks. Terrorist attacks have occurred over local holiday weekends. Terrorists have targeted tourists in Egypt in the past. There is a heightened threat of terrorist attacks targeting Coptic Christians from extremists linked to Daesh-Sinai in Egypt.

You should follow the advice of Egyptian authorities, remaining particularly vigilant and maintaining a high level of security awareness in crowded places and at large gatherings. You can find a list of public holidays on the Egyptian Presidency website. The authorities in Egypt maintain a significant security presence across the country, including armed security officers stationed at important sites, critical infrastructure, and road checkpoints. Extra measures are in place at tourist sites. See Terrorism

Following the crash of a St Petersburg-bound flight in North Sinai in October 2015, direct flights between the UK and Sharm el Sheikh were suspended. The UK government has worked with Egyptian authorities to enable flights to resume, and on 22 October 2019 the restrictions were lifted. You should check with your airline or tour operator for information on services.

There remains a heightened risk of terrorism against aviation in Egypt. Additional security measures are in place for flights departing from Egypt to the UK. You should co-operate fully with security officials at airports. See Terrorism and Air travel

Before travelling you should familiarise yourself with the entry requirements for Egypt. See health for more information, including what to do if you need to bring prescription or over-the-counter medication into Egypt.

While in Egypt, you must abide by local laws. Egyptian laws and customs are different to those in the UK. See local laws and customs for more information.

For further detail about what the FCDO can do to support British nationals abroad, see this guide.

British passport holders travelling to Egypt normally need a visa. See Visas

To contact the emergency services call 122 (police), 123 (ambulance) or 180 (fire).

If you’re abroad and you need emergency help from the UK government, contact the nearest British embassy, consulate or high commission. Consular support is severely limited in parts of Egypt where we advise against all travel and limited where we advise against all but essential travel.