Thank you for posting this. I'm curious what people's thoughts are around possible Anti-American violence in Cairo stemming from Bin Laden's death. Today's media outlets have mentioned mixed sentiments in Egypt regarding the news.
I'm leaving for Cairo on Saturday for 6 days, followed by a Luxor-Aswan cruise, so I'm somewhat concerned with how the recent events may affect US travelers there. My boyfriend and I had planned to do some independent exploring in Islamic Cairo, as well as some other parts of the city--should we re-think our plans?
Boston, I leave on Thursday myself. I wasn't at all nervous about Egypt until now. And now I think it's likely that we will claim to be Canadian. I have emailed another TA member who is currently in Egypt now (from San Francisco) asking for his impressions. I'm not planning to cancel, but I think I probably will stay away from the more off-he-beaten-path places that we were planning to explore on our own.
We leave May 15 but decided quite some time ago-even before the internal Egyptian situation-to book a guided trip instead of a total DIY. We have free days in Cairo, Luxor, Aswan, and Sharm but we will not venture too far outside our comfort zone. Don't intend to make any changes to anything planned at this point. We will exercise the same amount of caution as when we travel to other destinations. No flashy jewelry and will only carry small amounts of cash. We can't claim to be Canadian as can't pull off the accent!!
Seriously, do you think it would make much difference to be Canadian? We are Australian and I suppose could claim to be New Zealanders but would we all be lumped together as westerners? Would most people know that Australia is fighting with the US but not Canada and NZ?
Our cruise in September has had the Egypt ports changed and reinstated but I have the feeling anything could happen. Who knows where we will end up!
@KarenKwag, Amazingly, yes, there is a big difference between Canada and the US. Most people already have an opinion of the US, since we seem to have our nose in everything, but Canada is relatively neutral and you don't hear much from them in the news, so foreigners don't really bat an eye.
My friends have claimed to be Canadian before when they felt it wasn't the smartest to mention they were from the US, and they felt it kept them safer.
I leave for Egypt on the 11th and can't wait! Just remember to keep alert.
Be safe, everyone, in your travels!
My husband and I just return from Egypt yesterday. We left about 8 hours before the announcement about Bin Laden's death. We felt safe and didn't hesitate to tell people we were from the US and didn't feel any negativity from anyone. Mostly everyone said welcome and that they were happy we were there visiting Egypt.
We are a mixed race couple and most of the men keep telling my husband he was a lucky man. (I've always told him that) then they would say how much they loved Obama and America. Most people thought we were British or South Africian since that's where most of the tourist are from, not a lot of Americans go to Egypt. Matter of fact one of our tour guides ask why more American's don't visit Egypt, even before the revolution.
We did a mixture of private tours and independent travel. I will say I felt more comfortable on the tours. There is a lot of haggling and it start to get distracting from the vacation.
norcalgal, so glad you had a great trip--have been wondering how you fared! The haggling annoyed me. It's not something I got used to.
chris45ny, have a great time! May 15th is so close now. I'm sure you're all packed (I know you're well prepared) but don't forget toilet paper, antibacterial moist wipes for your hands, sunscreen and a hat. I don't think there was one bathroom (outside the hotels or "tourist" restaurants) that had enough paper or hand cleaners!
As i live in Cairo and born and raised in Cairo - Egypt i haven't seen any or heard any Anti American groups here who said or mentioned that we should or act against Americans.
The people here knows the difference between the Government and the people and i haven't seen any one even in Pakistan doing anything to a civilian.
Claiming that you are not an American is something that i am amazed with.as in where or in which situation you'll be asked by a terrorist if you are an American or not.
People might ask you in shops, at cafe's when they just want to go for a chat where are you from.
and anyways the security teams and the army now in Egypt is on full alert since the news of his killing.
In addition to what nola44 said about bringing, toliet paper and antibacterial wipes make sure you carry some coins for the restroom attendent or the tourist police who decides to show you around.
At our second stop in Aswan my husband and I was looking at the sight without our guide so we could take additional pictures when a tourist police started saying, 'Nubian, Nubian let me show you something special.' Ok we fell for it and followed him to the spot we had just left with our guide. We gave him a tip since he had his hand out.
Thank you egyptian_pharaoh! Nice to hear from someone in Cairo right now. I have been reading newspaper articles for the last two days which mostly support what you have said although there was one last evening with a gentleman who said “All Americans are dogs and sons of dogs!”. Lovely sentiment to be sure but there's always one bad apple in every bushel. Nevertheless, I will probably err on the side of caution and not flaunt my citizenship. :o)