Egypt Travel Warning
Issued by US Department of State
Mar 29, 2011
The U.S. Department of State urges U.S. citizens planning to travel to Egypt to consider the risks and to be aware of the information below. This Travel Warning replaces the Travel Warning dated February 18, 2011, to update information on the ongoing security and political situation in Egypt, including the return to Egypt of most non-emergency US Embassy personnel.
On February 1, the Department of State ordered the departure of all non-emergency government personnel and family members from Egypt due to the ongoing political and social unrest. The U.S Embassy in Cairo remains on ordered departure status for dependents, but most employees have returned, and the Embassy is resuming normal operations.
Elements of the Egyptian government responsible for ensuring security and public safety are not fully reconstituted and are still in the process of being reorganized. Until the redeployment of Egyptian civilian police is fully restored, police response to emergency requests for assistance or reports of crime may be delayed. The Embassy’s ability to respond to emergencies to assist U.S. citizens is also significantly diminished. The Government of Egypt has implemented a country-wide curfew. As of March 29, the curfew hours are from 2:00 a.m. to 5:00 a.m. U.S. citizens should obey curfew orders and remain indoors during curfew hours.
The security situation in Luxor, Aswan, and the Red Sea Resorts, including Sharm el Sheikh, is calm; however, the situation across Egypt remains unpredictable and subject to change. Travelers should remain in contact with their tour operators.
All airports, including the Cairo airport, are open and operating; commercial airlines report flight availability. Travelers should remain in contact with their airlines or tour operators concerning flight schedules. U.S. citizens who reside in Egypt should keep their travel documents up to date and maintain sufficient funds on hand to depart by air should security conditions change.
Male dual Egyptian–U.S. nationals who have not completed military service and have stayed in Egypt for more than six months are required to obtain an exemption certificate through the Ministry of Defense Draft Office before they can leave Egypt. The Ministry of Defense Draft Office reports they are open daily to provide exemption certificates.
The U.S. Department of State strongly urges U.S. citizens to avoid all demonstrations in Egypt, as even peaceful ones can quickly become violent and a foreigner could become a target of harassment or worse. U.S. citizens who are near demonstrations should remain in their residences or hotels until the demonstrations subside. Security forces may block off the area around the U.S. Embassy during demonstrations, and U.S. citizens should not attempt to come to the U.S. Embassy during that time. U.S. citizens are urged to remain alert to local security developments and to be vigilant regarding their personal security. U.S. citizens should carry identification and, if moving about alone, a cell phone or other means of communication that works in Egypt.
The U.S. Embassy is open for all routine American Citizens’ Services by appointment. U.S. citizens needing emergency assistance do not need an appointment. Visit the Embassy website to check the latest changes to embassy hours or services. U.S. citizens with routine phone inquiries may call the Embassy’s American Citizens Services section at 2797-2301, Sunday to Thursday from 1:00 p.m. until 3:00 p.m. For emergencies after business hours and on weekends and holidays, U.S. citizens can contact the Embassy Duty Officer via the Embassy switchboard on 2797-3300. The U.S. Embassy is closed on U.S. federal holidays. U.S. citizens in Egypt are encouraged to enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP). By enrolling, U.S. citizens make it easier for the Embassy to contact them in case of emergency.
For the latest security information, U.S. citizens traveling abroad should regularly monitor the Department of State’s Internet website where the Worldwide Caution, Country Specific Information for Egypt, Travel Warnings, and Travel Alert can be found. Follow us on Twitter and the Bureau of Consular Affairs page on Facebook as well. Up to date information on security can also be obtained by calling 1-888-407-4747 toll free in the United States and Canada, or, for callers outside the United States and Canada, a regular toll line at 1-202-501-4444. These numbers are available from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time, Monday through Friday (except U.S. federal holidays).
The Embassy is located at 5 Tawfik Diab Street (formerly known as Latin America Street), Garden City, Cairo. For emergencies after business hours and on weekends and holidays, U.S. citizens can contact the Embassy Duty Officer via the Embassy switchboard on 2797-3300. The American Presence Post (APP) in Alexandria is closed to the public until further notice. U.S. citizens in Alexandria needing emergency consular services may come to the Consular Section in Cairo during the hours noted above.