What currency is used in Egypt?

Travel Destinations

By Kristy Tolley

Currency in Egypt

Egypt is home to some of the world’s most fascinating ancient wonders, including the Pyramids of Giza and the Sphinx. For visitors who are planning to explore this ancient land, it is essential to understand the country’s currency. The official currency in Egypt is the Egyptian Pound (EGP), which is also known as the gineih.

The Egyptian Pound: Overview

The EGP is the official currency of Egypt and is subdivided into 100 piastres. The currency is issued by the Central Bank of Egypt, which is responsible for regulating the country’s monetary policy. The EGP is available in both coins and banknotes, with the coins being available in denominations of 25 and 50 piastres, as well as 1 pound, while the banknotes are available in denominations of 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 200, and 500 pounds.

History of the Egyptian Pound

The EGP was introduced in 1834, replacing the piastre as the official currency of Egypt. The currency was initially based on the British pound, with the exchange rate being set at one EGP to two shillings and fourpence. However, in 1885, the currency was pegged to the French franc, with a rate of one EGP to 0.29032 francs.

Banknotes and Coins: What to Expect

Egyptian banknotes and coins are readily available at banks, exchange offices, and hotels throughout the country. The banknotes are colorful and feature images of famous landmarks, including the Sphinx and the Abu Simbel temple. The coins are available in three denominations, with the 50-piastre coin being the most commonly used.

Exchange Rates: Understanding the Value

The value of the EGP can fluctuate depending on a variety of factors, including economic conditions, political stability, and global exchange rates. At the time of writing, one US dollar is equivalent to approximately 15 Egyptian pounds, while one Euro is equivalent to approximately 18 Egyptian pounds.

Where to Exchange Currency in Egypt

It is possible to exchange currency at banks, exchange offices, and hotels throughout Egypt. However, it is usually better to exchange currency at banks, as they offer better exchange rates and lower fees.

Credit Cards and ATMs in Egypt

Credit cards are widely accepted in Egypt, especially in tourist areas. However, it is always a good idea to carry cash as a backup. ATMs are also readily available throughout the country, with most accepting international cards.

Tips for Handling Money in Egypt

It is always a good idea to carry small bills and coins when traveling in Egypt, as many vendors may not have change for larger bills. It is also important to keep an eye on your belongings, especially when carrying large amounts of cash.

Currency Restrictions for Travelers

There are no restrictions on the amount of foreign currency that can be brought into Egypt. However, any amount over $10,000 must be declared upon arrival.

Using Foreign Currency in Egypt

While it is possible to use foreign currency in Egypt, it is usually better to exchange it for Egyptian pounds. Many vendors may not accept foreign currency, and those that do may offer unfavorable exchange rates.

Alternatives to Cash in Egypt

In addition to cash, it is also possible to use credit cards and traveler’s checks in Egypt. However, traveler’s checks are becoming less common and may be difficult to cash in some locations.

Conclusion: Navigating Currency in Egypt

Navigating currency in Egypt can be a bit confusing, especially for first-time visitors. However, by understanding the value of the EGP, where to exchange currency, and how to handle money safely, visitors can enjoy their trip to this ancient land without worrying about financial issues.

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Kristy Tolley

Kristy Tolley, an accomplished editor at TravelAsker, boasts a rich background in travel content creation. Before TravelAsker, she led editorial efforts at Red Ventures Puerto Rico, shaping content for Platea English. Kristy's extensive two-decade career spans writing and editing travel topics, from destinations to road trips. Her passion for travel and storytelling inspire readers to embark on their own journeys.

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