Living in Egypt Guide

Living in Egypt Guide

By Betsy Burlingame

Last updated on Aug 19, 2019

Summary: Expats, global nomads and retirees living in Egypt talk about meeting other expats, befriending locals, the local culture, diversity in Egypt, international schools, crime and more.

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People living in Egypt share their experiences making friends, adjusting to the culture, what expat life is like in Egypt, healthcare in Egypt and more.

Meeting People in Egypt

Expats living in Egypt talked about meeting people in Egypt and local clubs and organizations:

"The British Club and read the free newspapers for groups that meet once a week or so," said one expat living in Alexandria, Egypt.

"There is Alexandria American ladies group. It is unofficial social gathering for the American women’s who live in Alex. They meet once a month for coffee and planning events. The group is involved with the American center as well. There is another group called Alexandria women association. They meet every Monday for coffee and they do mostly charity work around Alexandria and it is open for all expects not just Americans," mentioned another expat in Egypt.

Expat Life in Egypt

What is it like living in Egypt? Here is what people had to say:

"In Egypt, Family is number one but going for coffee is right up there as well. Going to the mall (Carfor) seems to be a big deal here," said one expat living in Alexandria, Egypt.

"New Cairo City is still in its developmental stage. Since I've been here (the first one on my block; not even a paved street) slowly stores are being added and public transportation. I would like to know if there are other Americans in this area, and what they are doing. I'm interested in fitness and seeing things the ordinary tourists do not see. Also bargain hunting for household items," mentioned another expat in Egypt.

What Expats Appreciate about Their New Culture

We asked expats in Egypt what they appreciated about their new culture. Here's what they had to say:

"The people are very friendly and try and help wherever they can. The sense of safety is also a surprise. The delight in finding things that I am looking for is wonderful," said one expat living in Alexandria, Egypt.

The Most Challenging Aspects of Living in Egypt

Then, we asked expats in Egypt what was most challenging about their new culture. They replied:

"Very dirty, smelly, busy, noisy place. Nothing is the way you would expect it to be, and it's difficult to get many things done," said one expat living in Alexandria, Egypt.

Diversity in Egypt

We asked expats about diversity in Egypt and whether locals are accepting of differences. They said:

"Very friendly people and excepting of most but don't ever forget that being Muslim is very important to people here. They like people from all over to visit because this means having a good tourist business," said one expat living in Alexandria, Egypt.

"Egypt is a Muslim country and there is a large percentage of christens as well. They live in harmony for the most part. Most people like expects and as long as you don’t offend any one you will be fine," mentioned another expat in Egypt.

International Schools in Egypt

"I would put a thumbs-up and tell you to go ahead. Misr American College is the ideal school for your children. Its small community, foreign teachers, polite students, elite class, good reputation, effective methodologies, warm welcome, and strict yet relaxed atmosphere make it the ideal elementary, middle, and high school for expatriates and Egyptians," said one expat whose children attend Misr American College (MAC) in Maadi .

"CAC is a decent school but very schizophrenic. Be ready to live in a state of constant change if you stay more than 2 years or so. They are always rearranging/changing the curriculum, schedules, class and testing policies. Nothing remains the same for more than a year or so and at times I feel like my child has been a guinea pig when policy changes are made at the expense of consistent learning. It stresses out the kids, especially high school age, because they are always trying to figure out what the expectations are. The administration/teacher turnover has been rapid in the past 5 years which adds to the unsettled feeling at the school. Add in the revolution of the country last year and it makes for a very stressful environment that the administration fails to recognize," added another expat with kids at Cairo American College in Maadi.

"High school classes and teachers have been great! Middle and elementary teaching and professionalism is more questionable. I've heard these teachers talk about student's and parent's in the community - very worrisome. Find out who are the more experienced and professional teachers from someone who can give you first-hand information," commented one expat when asked about Cairo American College in Maadi.

"High school classes and teachers have been great! Middle and elementary teaching and professionalism is more questionable. I've heard these teachers talk about student's and parent's in the community - very worrisome. Find out who are the more experienced and professional teachers from someone who can give you first-hand information," remarked another expat living in Maadi with children attending Cairo American College.

"It's a good school. The principal knows each child by name and somehow knows each family and its situation. She is very caring and demands that her staff educate the whole child. She defends the children as if they were her own and makes sure they get what they need in the way of growth and development. I really like her alot," said another expat in Egypt with children at International American School.

"My advise is to go and see it for yourself, and you will be able to judge from the satff, academic directors and school facilities. You will like it..," remarked another parent with kids at Heritage Canadian International School in Giza.

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About the Author

Betsy Burlingame Betsy Burlingame is the Founder of Expat Exchange. She launched Expat Exchange in 1997 as her Master's thesis project at NYU. Some of Betsy's more popular articles include 6 Best Places to Live in Costa Rica, 12 Things to Know Before Moving to The Dominican Republic and 7 Tips for Obtaining Residence in Italy. Betsy loves to travel and spend time with her family. Connect with Betsy on LinkedIn.

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Guide to Living in Egypt covering expat life, local culture, finding a home, diversity and more.

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