Is a passport required for travel to Egypt?

One of the questions that many travellers who wish to visit Egypt have is whether they need a passport. Indeed, in some cases, a simple national identity card is sufficient to travel in this country. In this article we will look at what the legislation says about this and whether you need a passport to travel to Egypt for tourism.

Passport or national identity card to go to Egypt?

A stay in Egypt can be made with a valid passport or identity card valid for at least eight months after the date of arrival in Egypt for some EU nationals.

However, identity cards issued between 2 January 2004 and 31 December 2013 have an extended validity period of 5 years without any material change, but this additional period can sometimes cause problems when travelling abroad. Indeed, the Egyptian authorities have not yet taken a position on this measure.  It is therefore preferable to travel to this country with a valid passport.

If you do not have a valid passport, you can apply for an emergency passport but this document is not accepted everywhere. You should therefore ensure that it is recognised in Egypt before applying.

 

Do minors travelling to Egypt need a passport?

If you wish to travel to Egypt with your children, please note that minors of all ages must also have an individual passport in their name.

If a child is travelling without a legal parent, an exit permit is required. This form must be presented with the passport and a photocopy of the parent who signed the form.

 

Applying for a visa for Egypt with or without a passport:

While a passport is not required to visit Egypt, an official visa is essential to enter the country.

This visa can be issued directly at the Egyptian embassy or consulate in your country of residence. But it is also possible today to apply for this visa online with the e-visa procedure.

But be aware that obtaining a visa for Egypt before departure is only possible with a passport. If you wish to visit the country with a simple identity card, you must apply for a visa on arrival. However, this procedure is strongly discouraged for several reasons:

  • Firstly, if your visa is refused on arrival in Egypt, you will have to return to your country of origin by your own means.
  • On the other hand, the fees charged by immigration officials in Egypt do not always comply with the legislation and many tourists have been asked to pay very large sums of money by them.

If you are still considering this option, remember to bring your identity document and two recent passport photos with you.

 

How to apply for a visa for Egypt with a passport :

Obtaining a visa for Egypt with a passport is much easier. Indeed, if you have a valid passport and its validity covers at least 6 months after your expected return from this country, you can apply for a classic visa or an e-visa.

  • You wish to obtain a classic visa for your stay in Egypt: The classic visa application is reserved for nationalities that are not eligible for the electronic visa. To apply for a Classic Visa, download the form from the official website, fill it in and print it out and send it with the necessary supporting documents including two passport photos and your passport to the Egyptian Consulate or Embassy closest to your place of residence.
  • If you wish to apply for an e-visa: You can also apply for an e-visa with your passport, if you are a national of one of the member countries of the Egyptian government's scheme. This is a simplified procedure that allows you to apply for a visa online, without having to travel or send any documents. The procedure for an e-visa for Egypt is very simple and consists of filling in an online application form and providing the required supporting documents. Once accepted, your visa will be sent to you electronically, i.e. by email within a few days. All you have to do is print it out and present it when you enter Egypt. Although this procedure is quick, remember to do it at least 7 days before your departure date as a precaution.

 

Can I travel to Egypt without a passport or identity card?

Only Belgian, French, German, Italian and Portuguese nationals can travel to Egypt with their identity card valid for at least 8 months after the date of arrival in Egypt.

While Egypt agrees to issue visas on arrival for some travellers who do not have a passport and present themselves with a simple national identity card, it is not possible to travel without at least one of these two official documents.

Thus, there is no point in hoping to enter Egypt with a simple driving licence for example. If this document can be useful during your stay, it will not be considered as a valid proof of identity and you will be immediately refused a visa.

In any case, the ideal is to have a valid passport to obtain your visa for Egypt in the best conditions. Don't wait to apply for a visa as delays can be long, especially at certain times of the year. Once your passport has been issued, all you have to do is take advantage of the simplified e-visa procedure to obtain an entry permit for Egypt.