I just got back from this tour yesterday and will like to first say thank you to the tour guide Ramsey for rebooking me in a nicer hotel once I called him informing him that the original hotel they booked me in so that I could take a shower before catching my flight home was not to my liking. He went out of his way to be sure I felt safe and was taken care of due to my traveling alone. He even held my hand to and from the ship due to the boats “ramp” only being a plank with faux grass carpeting on it and a corded hand rail which is extended from the boat over the Nile river to stairs. It was very scary and he kept me comforted knowing my fear of falling off.
I also had another very intelligent guide by the name of Sharif. He was one of the most intelligent people I have met and I had a great time touring with him.
Ok… now let’s get into the tour. First I can’t stress enough that if you are as picky like me book your own hotels and flights. Egypt standards for five star accommodations are not that of other countries and it cost me less to book my own flights then to take the sleeper train. Also be prepared to take a tiny boat to one of the temples (I got in the boat and got right back out, lol. I just didn’t feel safe so I passed on seeing that temple. You also have to take a two minute boat ride to do the hot air balloon ride but the boat is bigger and it was stable and wasn’t bad at all. Also do know that the boat that you stay in on the Nile is really dated but the staff is extremely friendly and keep things really clean. I had one waiter but I forgot his name whom was extremely tentative towards me, he even pulled my seat out every day and carried my plates to the table for me. You are instructed at the beginning of your cruise that you are to put a tip for the entire crew in a provided envelope at the end of the cruise but my envelope got wet so I just tipped who I wanted and gave that one particular person a really nice tip because he deserved it. Oh be prepared to always be pushed to tip, if anyone so much as answers a question for you be prepared to give a tip. It was overwhelming and uncomfortable because it felt like I was being pressured out of my money! Others in my tour said it ruined the trip for them but I was prepared for this because I did a bit of research. Even in the airport don’t allow anyone to touch your bags because they are doing so to corner you for a tip. Oh also bring plenty of snacks. The lunch and the dinner on the ship was really tasty and filling but there are some days your morning will start at 4 a.m. and the bag of food supplied for those days are just not appetizing in my opinion. Also there are no snacks given between meals and stores are not easily accessible so pack treats because the meals are served at 7, 1 and 8. You also have to pay for all beverages including water so keep that in mind. I traveled solo and found the men to be a bit aggressive in Egypt even though I dressed modestly so be aware of your clothing choices. You don’t have to cover your hair or anything, I saw women in all sorts of clothing but do know that Egypt is very very dusty and rocky so I would leave anything that touches the ground or open toe shoes at home. I love a floor length dress but could only wear my nice dresses to dinner. Bring shoes that protect your feet and that are extremely comfortable because you will be very active when you are out, however there is a ton of downtime so bring a book or something that will keep you entertained because you are only out a few hours a day. Also bring soap and a wash cloth because that won’t be provided and be. As far as the weather, I went in January-February and early morning it is freezing, the afternoon gets warm to hot and then the evening gets really cold again so wear layers. The swimming pool and jacuzzi was on but half full and ice cold so don’t bother packing swimwear if you come during the winter months for this particular package. Oh and bring a crossbody or something you can keep close to you because one of my tour companions got her purse stolen and then returned in a “Good Samaritan” robbery where they steal from you and then return your item so they can then be compensated, but do know that no matter how much you give they will pressure you for more as per her recount of the situation. I didn’t get my horse and carriage ride but someone gave me one free at my hotel so I didn’t argue about it. I would definitely say if you want to see a few cities in Egypt and don’t want to plan everything yourself then definitely use this company, just upgrade your bookings yourself, you will save money and also do a bit of research before departure because tour guides don’t go inside most of the places with you which I didn’t understand. I hope this help, safe travels.