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Topics include Transportation, Egypt: For Foreign Visitors & more!
CURRENCY & TIPPING:-
* The local money is “Livres Egyptiennes”, which translates as “Egyptian pounds”and is shown as “L.E.” for short.
* There is a limit of 5,000LE which may be taken in and out of the country.
* The exchange rate is about 10% better in Egypt than at home & one can check the daily rates in Egypt on any one of the following sites: www.luxortraveltips.com & http://www.cbe.org.eg/ & http://www.nbe.com.eg/en/ExchangeRate... & http://coinmill.com
* Denominations of LE notes are: 200, 100, 50, 20, 10, 5 & 1 and there is also a 1LE coin. Each L.E. is made up of 100 piastres; they come in coins & notes. Take care not to confuse the notes with L.E. & check change carefully as this is a known scam.
* Small denomination notes of L.E. can sometimes be hard to obtain and you will not get any in the U.K. if you choose to exchange a small amount before you go. There is an exchange facility at Sharm airport and you may be able to obtain some there.
* Small notes are handy for tipping.
* Some hotels have atms in the grounds & there are several around the resort.
* Avoid Travellers Cheques - any currency - as you will find it impossible to exchange.
* Don’t flash hard currency about; pay in local. If you use dollars, Euros or sterling, you leave yourself open to be ripped off re: exchange rates. They believe that all the tourists are rich & seeing hard currency in use only re-enforces this belief. They always ask you what currency you’re using, in the hope that you say “dollars” or “sterling”!
* Be careful when paying by card as some posters have reported fraud / double transactions & also spasmodic fraudulent problems with atms.
* Do not take Scottish notes! You cannot exchange them.
*Cards accepted include: Master Card, Master Card Electron , Maestro , Visa , Visa Electron , Cirrus , Plus , Amex , Diners Club International , 123 , CSC Network , NAPS , SUDAPAN & Benefit.
TIPPING:- People report differing experiences on the locals’ expectations of tips. If you receive good service, then tip, if you don’t, then don’t tip. If you want to tip a little as you go along (to ensure good service) then do so; it’s up to you although others will disagree as it can lead to expectations that all tourists will do this.
In most restaurants your bill will list an item as "Service charge". But this goes to the restaurant not to waiters. So if you want to tip please don't forget that this is what actually the waiters would get.
Where possible, tip in local currency. They do accept £1 coins & Euro coins but will have to save them up & ask a tourist to exchange them for local notes, as they can’t get them changed any other way. Dollar notes are also accepted & there is no problem for Egyptians in exchanging these at banks.
The wages are low & £1 is quite a lot to them (about a day’s wages). This over-inflates their economy & makes a mockery of what a waiter will then have earned in comparison to a city Dr. or teacher, for e.g. It also increases the expectation of high tips.
Small denomination notes are sometimes hard to come by in Egypt so it may be that you feel obliged to tip the bell boys in another currency at the start of your hols. When you get some small notes; hang on to them! Generally, don’t tip if you don’t want to! The Brits are perceived as being softies.
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