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How to Get Around Cairo

By Lek Boonlert Subscribe to RSS | November 28th 2011 | Views:
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Taxi

Although these are found all over the city they can be a bit of a pain to use as drivers enjoy charging visitors over the top fees and they drive like men possessed! However, if you can grin and bear the traffic and make your way through the price haggling then you will find that they are the best mode of transport in the city in terms of convenience.

Tip 1 – Have spare change to hand as the driver will never be able to change large money

Tip 2 – Women must sit in the back of the cab

Tip 3 – Men must sit in the front of the cab

Tip 4 – Haggle a price before getting in as the metres rarely work

Tip 5 – Be prepared to pick up more fares along the way

Tip 6 – Hold on tight!

Bus/mini bus

Buses are a great way to get around if you are visiting on a very limited budget as they are extremely cheap. However, as with most things in life you get what you pay for so do not expect any personal space and be prepared to share your seat with children and/or chickens.

Mini buses run straight from the airport to the city centre for less than one Egyptian pound compared to a 25 Egyptian pound taxi fare. Mini bus tours that go out to major attractions such as the Pyramids of Giza are very popular and these types of tours are a great way to see the country.

Avoid public buses unless you really need to use them and if you find yourself on one then make sure that you know exactly where you are going as unless you speak Arabic; the driver and passengers will not know what you are saying! It is best to have the correct change as well as money handling can be problematic with the language barrier.

Metro

The Metro here is the only one in the whole of Africa and it is a great way to travel around in relative comfort. If you choose to stay in one of the discount Cairo hotel offerings then staff there will be happy to provide you with information about the Metro if you wish to use it during your stay.

Tickets

Tickets should only be purchased at the stations themselves and never through a travel agent or guide as these are often fake and cannot be used.

Dos and Don’ts

Make sure you know where you should be sitting as the platforms can be a little chaotic and don’t be afraid to push through the crowds as everyone is doing as queuing in not something that locals are familiar with. The front carriage is always reserved for women only and men should not enter the carriage.

However you choose to get around Cairo, you have plenty of options to choose between. See Old Cairo, the Egyptian Museum of Antiquities, the Hanging Church or the Saladin Citadel and enjoy your trip to this amazing city with a wide range of transport options to make use of.

Lek Boonlert - About Author:
Lek Boonlert is an editor and content reviewer at DirectRooms and is responsible for all Cairo Hotels content.

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