Egypt remains a very dangerous tourist destination due to terrorism, a high rate of rape, kidnapping, and robbery. As such, Egypt ranks #4 on the 2016 List of 10 Most Dangerous Countries for Women Travelers.
Rating: Dangerous and Obnoxious
As of 2016, the general consensus among most countries advising their citizens is that Egypt remains a very dangerous place due to terrorism from ISIS and a high rate of rape, kidnapping, and robbery. For example, ISIS militants stabbed three tourists in January. Unfortunately, the security forces have gotten trigger happy and actually killed 12 tourists they were trying to protect.
The Aussies politely say you should reconsider your need to travel and should particularly avoid the Governate of North Sinai. The Kiwis feel there is extreme risk in traveling to the Sinai Peninsula except for the Sharm Al Sheikh Resorts and that travel anywhere in Egypt is high risk (even Sharm Al Sheikh Resorts) due to kidnapping, terrorism, and armed groups. They note attacks on tourists and tourist sites, including ones in January 2016 on resort hotels in Giza and Hurghada. They are even suggesting avoiding Luxor, Giza and other important tourist areas.
Meanwhile, Canada suggests avoiding all non-essential travel to Egypt except for the Red Sea Coastal Resorts of Hurghada and Sharm Al Sheikh and Luxor to Aswan along the upper Nile. The UK travel advisory suggests avoiding all non-essential travel in the Governate of South Sinai and most of the area West of the Nile Valley and Nile Delta Regions except for Luxor, Qina, Aswan, Abu Simbel and the Valley of the Kings as well as the Red Sea Resorts of Sharm Al Sheikh and Hurghada.
In 2016, the main danger of rape is due to the state security services which are notorious for using security checkpoints, and other entry points for access to their victims, which are primarily Egyptians. However, since the Security forces have become so extreme, there is a danger to any tourist, particularly women, who are detained by the police or security forces. It is common for women tourists to be brushed up against and/or groped. There is a pattern of significant harassment and attacks on both women tourists and native women. There is also the perennial problem of being followed and hounded because you are a woman. Unless you are with a good Egyptian tour guide or group, this is not the country to travel solo.
If you want to go to Egypt or must go: There are enhanced security measures at Sharm Al Sheikh and Hurghada where there are also many resorts, as well as tourist sites along the Nile like Luxor and Aswan (incredible ruins), and Abu Simbel. Because tourism is so critical in these areas, the locals and law enforcement are allocating extra security to keep things safe despite the turmoil elsewhere in the country. It is wise to wear clothing that covers you completely and consider wearing a hat or scarf.
Conclusion: Perhaps you are thinking it would be better to go where a woman can travel freely and safely, if so, please refer to our 10 safest countries for women tourists.
Cover Photo: Reuters
Description: Mexican tourist survives bombing in Egypt