Egypt: Currency, Travel Tips
With the pyramids, the Nile and the year-round sun, no wonder you’re going to Egypt. On top of all that, a trip to Egypt is still relatively cheap. Good exchange rates on the Egyptian Pound means your British sterling will go far.
For backpackers or those travelling on a budget it’s possible to get a flavour of Egypt from around £15 to £30 a day, staying in budget accommodation and sampling local street food such as Egyptian staples fava beans and falafel. Travel around the country is cheap, with trains between Cairo and Luxor costing as little as £3 to £4 for the ten hour journey.
Staying in a basic hotel room with a private bathroom and fan and eating in local restaurants will cost between £15 and £20 a day, allowing for a bit of sightseeing and the odd daily treat. Travelling the country by air is affordable with domestic flights on EgyptAir starting at around £20. If you're heading to the beach book well in advance to get the best package deal or try a self-catering or bed-and-breakfast package.
The main expense in Egypt is the entry into tourist sites. A complete visit to the Giza Pyramids will set you back more than £30 in admission charges. Sharm el-Sheik is more westernised than other tourist destinations and many hotels and resorts will operate closer to western prices. The safest and most comfortable way to travel is by private taxi, but naturally this is also the most expensive way to get around.
Prices are approximate and subject to change.
Egyptian pound – currency tips
- To get a competitive rate on Egyptian pounds head to the Post Office and change your money before you get to the airport
- Egyptian banknotes come in 5, 10, 20, 50, 100 and 200 pound denominations. You can no longer get 1 Egyptian pound notes although old ones are still in circulation.There are also notes in 25 and 50 piastre denominations, but a currency shortage means theses notes are rarely seen
- Coins are minted in 5, 10, 20, 25, and 50 piastre denominations, as well as a 1 pound coin. The Egyptian pound consists of 100 piastres (pt), which comes in denominations of 5pt, 10pt and 25pt
- Tipping is widespread and you may find that prices are rounded up to the nearest pound because coins are hard to come by, so travel prepared with lots of small change
- Get plenty of 5 and 10 pound notes, plus some 1 pound notes to pay for public toilets
- Use larger notes in upscale establishments where it is more likely you will be able to get change
- You'll usually see prices written with the abbreviation LE rather than the pound symbol. LE stands for livre égyptienne (French for Egyptian pound)
- If you have US dollars or Euros left over from another trip you can probably use them in Egypt, particularly in tourist areas like Sharm el-Sheikh where these currencies are widely accepted
- In Arabic, Egyptian pounds are called gineih, and piastres are called qirsh
Want to keep track of your spending?
Keep track of your holiday spending and instantly convert local prices into pounds with our free smartphone apps. There are three handy apps to download for iOS and Android, including Travel Essentials, Travel Money Card Plus & Currency Converter. You can also download an instant currency converter for your Apple Watch.
Get your Egyptian currency from us
We make it easy to sort your Egyptian pounds before your trip:
- Order Egyptian pounds online for a better rate on foreign currency – minimum order value of £400 applies online
- 0% commission, competitive rates on up to 70 foreign currencies
- Delivered to your front door or pick up from one of 11,500 local Post Office branches. Search for your nearest branch here
- Free delivery for branch collection and online orders of £500 or over for home delivery Monday-Friday. For home delivery orders of under £500, there is a small delivery charge of £4.99.
- Orders placed before 3pm, on a working day, can generally be delivered to your home the next working day. Where an order is placed on a Friday and delivery is required on a Saturday, there will be a charge of £1.50
- Get a great rate by ordering your Egyptian pounds from us
- Order your Egypt currency online