For driving in Egypt, foreign drivers must have International driver licenses along with their domestic driving permits. They can legally drive with their valid International driver licenses for 6 months from arrival to Egypt. If visitor intends to stay in Egypt for a long time, he/she must get an Egyptian driver license. To obtain the Egyptian driver license, visitor must bring to a license office:
- A passport with a valid visa;
- Four passport size photos;
- A laboratory report about a blood type;
- Good results of eyes and medical tests.
- A statement from applicant’s Embassy corroborating applicant’s place of residence in Egypt and its Arabic translation.
- To receive the Egyptian driver license, an applicant will have to take theory and driving tests.
Driving in Egypt requires absolute attention because of chaotic traffic and undisciplined drivers. Below, it is some helpful information and advices for foreign visitors to drive in Egypt:
- Driving flows on the right side of the road.
- Drivers and all passengers must wear seatbelts.
- While driving, using cell phones without hands-free devices is prohibited.
- The minimum driving age is 18 years.
- A first-aid kit inside a car is required.
- Carry a valid National driving permit, International driver license, registration documents, and insurance documents all the times while driving.
- Don't left space between your car and the vehicle ahead since another car will immediately occupy it. As a result, you will be behind without a safety space. Or, people will try to slip through that space.
- The minimum age to rent a car is 21 years. Everybody who wants to rent a vehicle must be a holder of a driver license not less than one year. Car rental agencies are in all cities and most major hotels.
- In Egypt, there are some toll roads; the most relevant one is the Cairo-Alexandria road.
- The speed limit on open roads is 90 km/h, in built up ares - 60 km/h, on the Alexandria Desert road – 100 km/h, and on the Ayn Sukhna road – 120 km/h.
- On roads, some sings are in Arabic and some in English.
- Road accidents are very common in Egypt.
- Temperature is very high through all the year so you should hire a car with air conditioner.
- Certain categories of foreign visitors may import vehicles.
- Impatient Egyptian drivers often ignore the traffic rules.
- Some roads are off-limits to foreign visitors.
- Egyptian public mini- and micro-buses are not safe; you should not use them.
- Your driving license may be suspended for 30 or more days if you park your vehicle in the wrong place.
- The emergency services number is: the Police - 122; medical attention - 123; the fire department - 180; the tourist Police – 126; the Traffic Police - 128.
- Pedestrians have right of way.
- Children under 7 years o age are not allowed to sit on the front seats.
- Avoid driving at night; there are many carts and pedestrians on the roads.
- Avoid driving in the winter rains; in that time, roads can extremely slippery and sometimes localized flooding.
- Before driving check your car; all the time, have a spare tyre, compass, good map, food, water, salt, sugar, hat, and sunglasses.
- Top up your tank at every petrol station; if your tank is small and your trip is long, have an extra jerrican.
- Driving on loose sand is like on snow. If wheels get stuck in sand, put a rag under the back tires and move slowly.
- If your car breaks, don't leave it and wait another vehicle.
- In big cities, it is difficult to fain parking, but some people work to help with parking for a small tip.
- Allowable blood-alcohol levels are 0.05%.
In a case of accident, don’t remove your car until police arrives; don’t sign your name on piece of paper for anyone; get all information about another vehicle (name and address of its driver, number of his/her driver license, the phone number of the owner if he is not a driver); contact your insurance company and your Embassy.
Arabic Road Vocabolary
Driving Overseas - Short Information