Images by reesorts and Kasjan Farbisz from Pixabay
It is said as a long time wisdom: “Travel and change of place impart new vigor to the mind.”- Seneca
Traveling abroad has its fun and bright side. You meet new people, see new places, experience new cultures, speak a different language, taste new food and enjoy a different company.
Still, we can be faced with all kinds of situations while traveling. I remember back in the nineties, my brother was 18 and it was his first time ever to travel alone to Paris. Coming back at night alone in the subway, he was hassled by an African street gang, who stole all the cash money he had on him and ran away. It was a shocking experience for him, and the only thing that enabled him to get help was that he had hidden 50 francs in his left shoe, so he was able to ride the subway and go back to his hotel. Did that incident prevent my brother from going back to visit Paris? NEVER! Now married with two kids, he makes it a habit to travel to Paris every couple of years because, as he says, “Paris is the city of fun and elegance for me”.
If each and every one of us started remembering the experiences we went through during our travels, from missing planes to losing our passports, getting our baggage misplaced in another flight, losing money, paying extra without knowing …etc, the stories are countless. It’s true that at the moment of the incident itself, we feel pretty much traumatized, yet, after a while, it just becomes a funny memory that we tell to our friends and children along with the lesson learned from it.
When you come to Hurghada, you can be expecting sunny weather, cool breeze, amazing beaches, nice excursions, amiable people and tasty food.
If you booked your diving through “Dive-Hurghada”, you don’t have to worry about your transfer from the hotel to the diving site and back. Still, if you plan to go out at night, moving from one place to another can be challenging unless you know the different modes of transportation that you can use.
The local Micro-bus:
This is the easiest and cheapest mode of public transportation in Hurghada. It’s a small white bus that can transport up to 14 people at once.
Advantage: the price of one ride can vary from EGP 2.5 to 5 (less than half a euro). If you are a group of 2 or more travelers, and you are going around the city with a tight budget, this can be very helpful for you.
Disadvantage: Microbuses look most of the time like the shuttle buses of hotels and touristic agencies, except that they have no logos on them. Also, the seats are a bit tight and the routes are very limited, going from/to downtown Hurghada city only. Drivers do not speak other languages than Arabic and it can be a bit difficult for a foreigner to know where to go if they are not familiar with the city.
The Local Taxi:
They are very distinctive with their special colors (Orange & Blue) and you can find them moving around everywhere in the city.
Advantage: they are slightly more comfortable than the Microbus. The type of car that you usually find is “Hyundai Verna”. Each taxi has a code number clearly stamped on the door. In case the driver does anything annoying, you can directly report it to the Police force by mentioning the code on the door and they deal with him directly.
Disadvantage: Most of the cars are not air-conditioned. There is a visible meter in each taxi to show the price to be paid, yet no taxi actually uses it. Therefore, it is difficult to know the fair price for a ride while using this mode of transportation. Many taxi drivers are driving too fast and they don’t speak other languages than Arabic. Sometimes, they can exaggerate in their price estimation and if the traveler is not aware of the Egyptian different currency bills, the driver can easily con the traveler and take EGP 100 instead of 10.
If you choose to take a taxi, consider that the minimum fair is EGP 15, up to 100 (depending on which part of Hurghada are you moving to) and if you choose to go to Makadi Bay, Soma Bay, El Gouna or Sahl Hashish, the fair can exceed and reach up to EGP 300 per ride.
This is a fairly new service in Hurghada (started a few years ago).
Advantage: This service is reached via a mobile phone. All you need to do is dial +20100 222 8294. You won’t be charged the phone call, as the line will close then an operator will call you back and ask where to pick you from. You receive a SMS with the car’s plate numbers. It takes from 10 to 20 minutes to reach your pick up location (depending on the availability of cars and the location proximity). Nice comfortable cars, with air condition and good quality drivers who speak other languages than Arabic. The driver has an application on his mobile phone that indicates exactly how much money needs to be paid for the ride and payment is done in cash in Egyptian Pounds.
Disadvantage: The cars do not have any distinctive signs. They look like normal owned cars, which can make it a bit difficult to recognize unless you know how to read the plate numbers. If you don’t have Egyptian Currency and you want to pay in other currencies, the driver will do the calculations based on what shows on his device, and the currency exchange rate can be different than the bank’s announced rate, depending on ABC company’s policy and announced rate on the day of the trip.
Uber or Careem Transportation Service:
This service is very new in Hurghada (started in 2017) and can be very convenient for solo travelers. All you need to do is download the application from the App store on your mobile phone and connect your Credit Card to it and you are ready to use it.
Advantage: Like ABC taxi, you can expect a nice clean, comfortable and air-conditioned car. With a simple click on your app, you book a car. The application indicates the expected time of arrival of the driver, as well as the name of the driver, his photo and the type of the car to expect as well as the plate number. The driver calls the client once they receive the request. They can speak other languages than Arabic. You can pay in Cash if you don’t have a credit card. The application then indicates the price for the ride and you can go rate the driver and the service on the app store afterward.
Disadvantage: the cars, like ABC taxi, have no distinctive sign on them. They look like normal owned cars. If you don’t have Egyptian pounds, you can pay in other currencies according to the rate the driver tells you on the spot (not necessarily the rate announced by the bank).
In all cases, if you book your dives with “Dive-Hurghada”, we shall help you out during your stay and ensure that your movement is easily and safely made with convenience and fair prices.
Dalia Saleh - Clients Relations Manager