Travel Information

Travel Information in General

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Department of foreign affairs Germany
Department of foreign affairs Suisse
Department of foreign affairs Austria
Department of foreign affairs Great Britain
Department of foreign affairs France
Department of foreign affairs Italy
Department of foreign affairs Belgium

When to travel

Egypt is a great destination for divers all year round. Temperatures range from an average 21 degrees in January to 35 degrees in July/August. The water cools over the winter down to 21 degrees, but warms up in summer to up to 28 degrees.

 

Currency

Egypt’s currency is the Egyptian Pound (LE). 1 pound is worth 100 piaster. The exchange rate in 2014 war around: 1 Swiss Franc = 7.5 LE and 1 Euro = 9.5 LE.
The exchange rate in Egypt is more reasonable on site than in Europe.
Unlimited import of foreign currency is permitted.

Entry and Visa

The tourist visa is valid for 4 weeks and can be obtained at the airport for 25 US dollars. You must present your passport (or personal ID card for German citizens) and provide 2 additional passport photos. Your passport must be valid for at least 3 months.

Useful Telephone Numbers

  • 122 Police
  • 126 Tourist office
  • 180 Fire brigade
  • 140, 141, 142 Directory enquiries
  • 120 International operator
  • 10 National equiries
  • 123 Ambulance
  • 144 Directory enquiries (international)

Interesting Facts

Why is the Red Sea such a unique diving experience?

  • Europe’s closest tropical coral reefs
  • 360 days of sunshine guaranteed
  • Pleasant water temperature all year round (21 – 26 °C)
  • Visibility of 20-30 m
  • Exceptional wealth of underwater flora and fauna
  • Historical diving spots and wrecks

Why is the Red Sea called the Red Sea?

Even in Antiquity, seafarers referred to these waters as "Mare Rubum". The Arabs adopted a like expression: "El Bahr el Ahmar" (el Bahr – the sea, el Ahmar – redness). There are three reasons which singly or jointly might explain why this name stuck

  • A periodically recurring accumulation of organisms floating as red foam on large areas of the surface.
  • The light of the setting sun reflecting off the yellow reddish land around the sea makes it appear red in color.
  • "Eryhtros", the name of the area of Eritrea is of Greek origin and means red.

The Best Time to Travel Here

The Red Sea and environs is suitable for travel and diving year-round:

  • Summer: May to September
    Hot, dry with just a few windy days, temperatures from 86 °F to 113 °F (30°C to 45°C), water usually clear.
  • Winter: October to April
    Warm, dry and strong winds. Temperatures from 59 °F to 86°F (15°C to 30 °C), water sometimes a little cloudy.

Recommended Diving Gear

  • Summer
    Neoprene wetsuit, 3 - 5 mm thick, light cotton clothing.
  • Winter
    Neoprene wetsuit, 6-7 mm thick, preferably with hood and boots. Warm sweater and pants, windbreaker.

What else should you pack?

  • Certification cards and/or logbook
  • Medical certificate (less than a year old)
  • SUBEX Member Card (if you have one)
  • Sun block/tanning lotion and protection from the sun, e.g. hat and sunglasses.

Language

Arabic is the official language of Egypt. Most locals working in the tourist sector here speak English and some also speak a bit of German, Italian or French.

Methods of Payment

  • The national currency in Egypt is the Egyptian pound (£E). .
  • Hotels and banks/exchange offices will change traveler’s checks.
  • SUBEX Red Sea accepts the following at all its bases:
    CHF, EUR, £E, US$ in cash/ CHF, EUR, US$ in traveler’s checks. Credit cards: Visa, Master/Euro-Card, Amexco (Amexco not accepted in Sharm).

Entry and Visa

Most European citizens need nothing more than a passport valid for at least another six months. The visa is entered in your passport on entry at the border or at the airport in Egypt. The visa stamps can be purchased at the airport/border and cost about US$ 15.00. Make sure you ask your travel agent in advance about the current entry regulations applicable to yourself (and your party) just to be sure.

Reservations and Bookings

  • We recommend that you make an advanced reservation directly with the SUBEX base you would like to go to; in El Quseir, an advanced registration is required!
  • Our diving programs can be reserved and booked through any diving tour organizer or major travel agency. For ONLINE BOOKING, please visit our BOOKING page.
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