#1. "RE: Nikonians in Egypt" | In response to Reply # 0texspeel Nikonian since 09th Nov 2011Thu 04-Jul-13 01:52 PM
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#3. "RE: Nikonians in Egypt" | In response to Reply # 2Ned_L Charter MemberTue 09-Jul-13 10:08 AM
Bill, I would seriously start rethinking Egypt.
My friends there live mostly in Cairo, and some have again moved out and are living elsewhere in the country with family due to the dangers of Cairo, and some of the other cities, at this time. They are mostly in the travel business and have been hit by hard times since I saw them last in November, 2011. We were very lucky on that trip, leaving in the wee hours for our plane home, not long before the rioting in Tahrir Square began later that day. We actually drove right through the Square to get to the airport.
According to the US State Department, which is typically somewhat conservative in viewpoint, but in my opinion, correct about travel to Egypt at this time, US Citizens should defer their travel to Egypt for now.
You can see their latest travel warning about Egypt here.
As a travel writer, I'm asked about travel to various countries often. At this time I don't recommend travel to Egypt.
This morning, CNN is reporting that Egyptian state media has said that a declaration by Adly Mansour coming out later today will give Mansour limited power to make laws, and call for a constitutional referendum in November, followed by parliamentary elections in December and a presidential poll in February. That sounds like conditions aren't likely to improve until after November at the earliest.
I think you should consider at least making some backup plans.
If you do go, if things dramatically improve, I strongly suggest you enroll in the US State Department's STEP program. STEP stands for Smart Traveler Enrollment Program.
Many travelers are aware of the country-specific warnings the government issues, but this program will deliver any appropriate warnings to your email address in real time. Instead of just checking in advance, now travelers can be alerted to problems during their trip, should they come up. I have the warnings emailed directly to my iPhone.
Signing up for the program is easy, and travelers can then receive detailed information about their destination country. Travelers also receive any updates, including Travel Warnings and Travel Alerts, which are essential news updates and warnings provided by the U.S. government about specific destinations. These warnings and alerts can help Americans avoid problem countries and areas and are essential for international travel.
In addition to receiving warnings, the STEP system allows government authorities to contact and assist travelers in emergencies, political violence, and natural disasters, should any of them strike. The system can be used to make communication easier with family back home in emergency situations.
Friends of mine where traveling in Chilean Patagonia in 2011 when civil unrest broke out over gasoline pricing and the feeling Patagonians were being ignored by the central Chilean government. Fortunately, they had enrolled in STEP, and were contacted by the State Department which helped them and many other Americans get evacuated from the area and get home. More than a 1,000 tourists from various nationalities were evacuated with help from their governments and the Chilean military. Many more were stranded, in part because they weren't aware of how to get out, due to not registering with their home governments.
Once enrolled in the system, travelers can add and remove individual trips from their personal accounts, so the system always reflects the current, real itinerary. You can enter your travel itinerary and hotel information, and any foreign address at which you'll be at and your phone numbers. I always carry my iPhone with me, which has international service. That number is registered with STEP too. The sign-up is done online on the State Department website and takes only minutes. The information collected is protected by government privacy laws and can only be used for travel-related purposes.
You can sign up with STEP here.
Let us know what happens, and what you decide to do about your trip and your safety.
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