Safety in Egypt
Where it not for the number of emails I receive from people asking about safety in Egypt, this month's Editor's Commentary would be addressing other matters. But I have received hundreds of letters asking my opinion on how safe it is to travel in Egypt. Yet, I have also received hundreds of emails from tourists returning from Egypt, and have not been told of one problem that any of them experienced due to the recent problems in the Middle East. Most have told me that there where simply no indications that any problems were going on. But we continue to get considerable email asking us about safety, so we will elaborate.
Egypt has, and continues to be one of the friendliest nations in the world to visit. For me, it has always seemed that even the most average Egyptian is, by nature, a gracious host. I often use the example of me walking down a side street in Cairo with my camera and being met by an Egyptian on his way to work. He greets me with "welcome", and a warm smile, making me feel that the words were not just said, but meant. This has happened to me on many occasions, in a city of 16 million people, but could you imagine a similar occurrence in a the much smaller city of New York, or even smaller Miami?
Today, Egypt is a very safe tourist haven for many different reasons. First of all, there is the crime rate, which is virtually zero in Egypt. Traveling around in the US, and many other western nations, a tourists most likely threat is from criminals, and indeed, many tourists have and continue to be subjected to violent criminal problems in western tourist destinations. But crime is not a real problem in Egypt, and the likelihood of a tourists in Egypt coming into contact with this threat hardly exists at all.
The second reason tourists are so safe in Egypt is simply because the government exerts a high priority on their safety. Unlike many western nations, tourism is one of the top economic contributors to the Egyptian economy, and as such, the government of Egypt takes many steps to ensure that tourists have a safe and enjoyable visit. In fact, there is an entire division of police devoted to nothing other than making sure of this.
Finally, and perhaps most importantly, Egypt is more and more a modern member of the world community. Not just the country, or the government, but the people themselves. Many if not most of the people that tourists come into contact with are well educated and even sophisticated by world standards. Upon their first visit to Egypt, most tourists will be surprised by the number of cell phones, the modern dress, the new automobiles and the amount of western media and interaction to be found everywhere. In other words, Egypt is not, and doesn't seem so far away from home as it once did.
So don't take my word for it. Find a friend who has recently visited Egypt and he or she will most likely tell you the same as I, "Go, have fun, find the roots of civilization", and as the Australians would say, "No worries".
A Kid in Ancient Egypt By Ilene Springer
Foods of the Gods: Part I - Wine in Ancient Egypt By Dr. Michael Poe, Phd.
Ramadan in Egypt By Sameh Arab
Editor's Commentary By Jimmy Dunn
Ancient Beauty Secrets By Judith Illes
Book Reviews Various Editors
Kid's Corner By Margo Wayman
Cooking with Tour Egypt By Mary K Radnich
Hotel Reviews By Juergen Stryjak
Egyptian Exhibitions By deTraci Regula
Nightlife Various Editors
Restaurant Reviews Various Editors
Shopping Around By Jimmy Dunn
Web Reviews By Siri Bezdicek