Getting a tourist visa for Egypt – Which type is right for you

Egypt is a popular tourist destination, with over 9 million people travelling there each year. With its ancient history and luxury resorts, it's clear to see why. Whether you are planning on exploring the Valley of the Kings, relaxing by the pool or cruising down the Nile, Egypt has plenty to offer to make every visit exciting and unique. Find out which visa type you'll require for your trip, to avoid any delays.
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Our visa specialists Katie outlines the various visa types available for Egypt, and assists you in identifying which one you’ll require based on your circumstances.

What We’ll Cover

  • How to find out which visa type you need

  • Which nationalities don’t need a visa

  • Whether you need a pre-travel or on-arrival visa

  • What to do in all other cases

What determines the type of visa you need?

As with every holiday, it is important to plan ahead and part of this is knowing what visa, if any, you need. Egypt can be particularly confusing as there are many different requirements depending on where you are staying, the passport you hold, how long you are staying and if you are travelling for business or pleasure. It is important to know if you can get a visa on arrival, if the e-visa is more suitable for you or if you would be required to send your application to the Egyptian Consulate. By not knowing the right visa for you, you may risk being turned away at the border and not being able to enjoy your holiday.  

Which nationalities can travel to Egypt visa free?

If you are travelling to as a tourist to Sharm El Sheikh, Dahab, Nuweiba and Taba resorts, you may not require a visa for stays up to 15 days. You have to be a holder of an eligible passport, which are listed below.  

To be eligible for this visa free period, you cannot leave your resort. If you plan on exploring outside your resort, you would be required to obtain a visa.  

Austria  Estonia Ireland Netherlands Spain 
Belgium Finland Italy  Norway Sweden 
Bulgaria France Latvia Poland Switzerland 
Croatia Germany Liechtenstein Portugal United Kingdom  
Cyprus Greece Lithuania Romania United States 
Czech Republic Hungary Luxembourg Slovakia  
Denmark Iceland Malta Slovenia  

Can I apply for a visa on arrival instead of before I leave?

If you hold one of the below passports and you are travelling for a holiday, you can obtain a visa on arrival. You can do this at any of the ports in Egypt and it allows you to stay in Egypt for up to 30 days. It costs 25 USD per person, and the Egyptian authorities do advise that you take the exact change in USD as their card machines and kiosks are sometimes broken, and this will save you some time and hassle at the airport.  

Australia Estonia Italy New Zealand Spain 
Austria  Finland Japan Norway South Korea 
Belgium France Latvia Poland Sweden 
Bulgaria Georgia Liechtenstein Portugal Switzerland 
Canada Germany Lithuania Romania Ukraine 
Croatia Greece Luxembourg Russia United Kingdom  
Cyprus Hungary Macedonia Serbia United States 
Czech Republic Iceland Malta Slovakia  
Denmark Ireland Netherlands Slovenia  
visa for egypt mint tea

Who can use the new e-visa scheme?

The following passport holders can apply for the Egyptian e-visa before they travel. This visa allows you to enter Egypt once and stay for up to 30 days.  

This is a straightforward process, however simple mistakes in the application form could mean that the visa is denied. These mistakes could be a spelling mistake or information not matching the details in your passport. We can assist by double checking all of your documents and completing the application on your behalf. This minimises the risk of it being denied and means that you do not need to worry about the application.  

Once the visa has been granted, all you need to do is print it off and take it with you to the arrival airport.  

You can apply for this e-visa if you are travelling for tourist purposes. If you are travelling for business, it is highly recommended that you apply for the full visa through the Consulate. If you are travelling to attend conferences, seminars and courses, then you must apply for the full visa.  

Albania Estonia Latvia Norway Sweden 
Australia Finland Liechtenstein Poland  Switzerland 
Austria  France Lithuania Portugal Ukraine 
Belgium Germany Luxembourg Romania United Kingdom 
Bulgaria Greece Macedonia Russia United States 
Canada Hungary Malta Serbia Vatican City 
Croatia Iceland Monaco Slovakia  
Cyprus Ireland Montenegro Slovenia  
Czech Republic Italy Netherlands Spain  
Denmark Japan New Zealand South Korea  

Which nationalities need a full pre-travel tourist visa for Egypt? 

If you hold one of the following passports, you need to obtain a visa before you travel to Egypt. Unfortunately, you are not eligible for the visa on arrival or the e-visa, even if you hold an UK residence permit. The Egyptian authorities will look at your passport, rather than your residence permit.  

In order to obtain this visa, you must submit your application to the Egyptian General Consulate in London. This means that they will want to see your original passport, British residence permit and application form before they will grant the visa for Egypt.  

American Samoa China Jamaica North Korea Swaziland 
Andorra Colombia Jordan  Northern Cyprus Syria 
Angola Costa Rica Kazakhstan Oman Taiwan 
Antigua and Barbuda Cuba Kenya Palau Tajikistan 
Argentina D. R. Congo Kiribati Panama Tanzania 
Armenia Dominica Kuwait  P.N. Guinea  Togo 
Aruba Dominican R Kyrgyzstan Paraguay  Tonga 
Azerbaijan East Timor Laos Peru Trinidad and Tobago 
Bahamas Ecuador Lesotho Puerto Rico Turkey 
Bahrain Egypt  Libya Qatar  Turkmenistan 
Barbados El Salvador Macao R. of the Congo Tuvalu 
Belarus E. Guinea Madagascar St Kitts and Nevis Uganda 
Belize Fiji Malawi  Saint Lucia UAE 
Benin Gabon Malaysia St Vincent Uruguay 
Bermuda Gambia Maldives Samoa Uzbekistan 
Bhutan Grenada Marshall Islands San Marino Vanuatu 
Bolivia Guatemala Mauritius Sao Tome & Principe Venezuela 
Bosnia & Herzegovina  Guinea Mexico Saudi Arabia Vietnam 
Botswana  Guinea-Bissau Micronesia Senegal Western Sahara 
Brazil Guyana Mongolia Seychelles Yemen 
Brunei Haiti Mozambique Singapore Zambia 
Burkina Faso Honduras Namibia Solomon Islands Zimbabwe 
Cape Verde Hong Kong Nauru South Africa  
C. African. R  India Nepal South Sudan  
Chile Ivory Coast Nicaragua Suriname  

Nationalities requiring prior approval for a visa application

If you hold one of the following passports or an UK Travel Document, then you must seek approval from the authorities in Egypt before you can apply for the visa. In order to do this, you must submit your documents at the Egyptian Consulate in London, who will then send photocopies of your documents on to Egypt. Once approval has been granted, you will receive notification from the Consulate and be requested to send your documents to them so the visa can be applied in your passport.  

This process can take up to 8 weeks, so it is important to send your documents to them well in advance so that the approval can be granted in time for your travel to Egypt.  

Afghanistan Djibouti Kosovo Niger Sri Lanka 
Algeria Eritrea Lebanon Nigeria Sudan 
Bangladesh Ethiopia Liberia Pakistan Syria 
Burundi Ghana Mali Palestine Thailand 
Cambodia Indonesia  Mauritania Philippines Tunisia 
Cameroon Iran Moldova Rwanda UK Travel Document  
Chad Iraq Morocco Sierra Leone  
Comoros Israel Myanmar Somalia  

Unfortunately, we are unable to assist with this process and we recommend that you contact the Egyptian Consulate, who should be able to advise you further. Their contact details are: 

Egyptian Consulate General 
2 Lowndes Street 
Phone: 02072359777 

key takeaways

Key Takeaways

There are a variety of visa types available for tourists travelling to Egypt. Some citizenships have several options available to them when it comes to choosing how to apply for their visa, but opting for a pre-travel visa is often the fastest way to get through customs when you arrive. Even if you have a pre-travel visa, it’s always a good idea to carry copies of your itinerary and accommodation confirmation documents in case you need to present them once you land!

Declan Ramsden
Declan Ramsden

Declan is a Content Creator at Vital Consular. He studied English Literature for 4 years before joining the company. Outside of work, he enjoys listening to retro music and reading classic novels – particularly Charles Dickens!

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  1. I have not received my pre-approval for the visa until now. It’s almost 2 months since I submitted the documents to the consular office in London and we are supposed to fly next week. I am so stressed about it, been calling and emailing them but apparently, Consulate has not received any update yet from the relevant authorities in Egypt. I am heartbroken. What should I do?

    • Hi Marnie,

      I’m really sorry but unfortunately there’s nothing that can be done – it’s all dependent on the Egyptian authorities. Sometimes you can apply for a visa-on-arrival, but I’m assuming that this isn’t applicable in this case? The only thing you can do really is to call the Egyptian Embassy in London and ask for an update. I’m sorry there’s no way we can help you, and fingers crossed it all gets sorted in time for you.

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