What to Pack for Egypt: The Ultimate Egypt Packing List

Planning a trip to Egypt? This Egypt packing list includes everything you'll need to pack no matter what the season, plus a guide on what to wear in Egypt! | Egypt Packing List | What to Pack for Egypt | What to Wear in Egypt

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Traveling in Egypt can be chaotic, but packing doesn’t have to be! Many people struggle to figure out what to pack for Egypt, mostly because they have no idea what they can (or should) wear. Can I wear leggings in Egypt? Should I wear a headscarf? Is wearing shorts disrespectful? These are questions I get all the time about Egypt travel, amongst others.

I’ve visited Egypt in every season and have put together the complete Egypt packing list. It includes a comprehensive guide on what to wear in Egypt and what to pack for your trip no matter what the season. Without further ado: what to pack for Egypt!


Weather in Egypt

There’s really no bad time to visit Egypt, as the weather is generally pleasant year-round, with the exception of scorching hot summers.

November – March: This is the best time to visit for cooler weather and generally empty sites (with the exception of December and early January because of school holidays). Winter is mild (50s-60s in December – February) in Egypt but Alexandria (and sometimes Cairo) does see quite a bit of rain during this period.

April – May / September – October: These are the best months to visit Egypt, especially if you’re interested in traveling both in the North and the South. The weather is warmer but not scorching, so it’s pleasant enough to both hike and hit the beaches.l

June – August: If you don’t mind the heat, summer in Egypt is perfect for all-day beach and pool lounging. This is peak tourism season at the Red Sea. Cairo, Luxor, and Aswan have fewer tourists due to temperatures that reach over 100 degrees Fahrenheit.


What to Pack in: Luggage and Accessories

Over the years, I’ve somewhat perfected become better at only packing things I need and packing carry-on only (for the most part) for most of my trips. Except for like, months and months of travel, in which case, I like to have options.

If you’re traveling to Egypt, chances are you’ll be visiting at least two or three cities which means you’ll be lugging your luggage from place to place via some mode of public transport. I’ve been the person that drags a wheelie suitcase through the streets (seriously, I did it on my Intrepid tour) and it’s honestly just not practical. So even if you aren’t usually a backpacker, I highly recommend bringing a backpack in Egypt for ease of transport. Doing laundry is inexpensive anyway, so it’s easier to wash your clothes once or twice instead of bringing two weeks worth of clothing in a giant bag. Trust me on this one.

  • Backpack: This backpack is hands down the best carry-on-sized backpack I’ve ever used for travel. Not only is it carry-on sized, but it’s also incredibly comfortable and easy to carry, even for a small-framed person like me. It has tons of pockets and compartments for organization, lockable zippers, and it’s weather resistant. If you really don’t think you can handle packing in a carry-on, the Osprey Fairview 70 Backpack is just as comfortable but larger. You can also technically get away with using it as a carry on and the additional pack as your personal item. Win!
  • Packing Cubes: I never understood why people needed packing cubes until I got some of my own. Guys, they’re the BEST for keeping organized! I can no longer travel without them. Now I avoid what I fondly call “exploding suitcase syndrome” – that tendency for all your things to go all over the place every time you need to get one thing from your suitcase. I’m a fan of these ones made specifically for the backpack I recommended, but if you have a different backpack, these compression packing cubes are pretty great too!
  • Daypack: For days where I’m out all day, I always carry a daypack. This daypack is great because it’s durable, water-resistant, has several organizational pockets, and folds into a tiny pouch.
  • Locking Purse: Egypt doesn’t have a pickpocketing problem and I’ve never been worried that someone will snatch something from my bag. However, I’d rather be safe than sorry, which is why I bring this handy lockable purse with me everywhere I travel. Is it the most stylish purse I’ve ever owned? No. Does it keep me from worrying about pickpockets? Absolutely. Plus, it’s surprisingly roomy – I keep my water bottle, camera, wallet, and other stuff in there and they fit no problem. If a smaller purse is what you’re after, check out this one or this one.
  • Organizing bags: I learned the hard way on my first solo trip that keeping your bag organized is crucial. Otherwise, you end up repacking your bag every other day, which suuuuucks. Therefore, in addition to your packing cubes, bring along an electronics organizer (especially if you travel with a ton of gear), shoe bags (to keep your shoes away from your clean clothes, of course), a laundry bag (you can also use a separate packing cube if you prefer), and a toiletries bag (liquids spilling on your clothes make for a bad time).
Planning a trip to Egypt? This Egypt packing list includes everything you'll need to pack no matter what the season, plus a guide on what to wear in Egypt! | Egypt Packing List | What to Pack for Egypt | What to Wear in Egypt
The beautiful views from Mena House Hotel in Giza – one of my top hotel recommendations in Cairo

What to Wear in Egypt: Clothing and Shoes for Every Season

I know that clothing is always the hardest thing to pack because you want to bring clothes that are both functional and cute which is NOT easy. What you’ll pack and wear in Egypt as a whole depends entirely on the season and which areas you’re traveling in. In general, Egypt is a conservative country. People tend to dress smartly and you’ll stand out if you’re wandering around in workout gear, loungewear, or revealing or ultra-tight clothing.

Women don’t have to cover their hair, but as a rule of thumb, cleavage, shoulders, and knees (to mid-calf, really) should be covered at all times, except at beach resorts. The same goes for men, especially if you want to somewhat blend in. Nobody will ever call tourists out for not adhering to this dress code, but I’m a firm believer in respecting local customs.

At beach resorts, you can more or less wear what you want at the beach and pool (although women shouldn’t go topless). However, wearing a cover-up or shirt at hotel restaurants, etc is a good idea.

If you’re visiting Cairo in the winter, it gets mildly cold (50s – 70s Fahrenheit). Leave your winter coat at home, but bring some sweaters, jackets, and pants. Alexandria is usually colder than Cairo, whereas Upper Egypt is warm, even during the winter. In the summer, it’s blazing hot everywhere.

Summer: (3) temperature regulating t-shirts, (3) blouses/t-shirts, (1) insect repelling long-sleeved shirt, (2) pairs of loose-fitting pants, (1) pair of jeans/nicer pants, (2) skirts, (1) dress, everything else in the other categories except for the down jacket

Winter: (2) temperature regulating t-shirts, (2) temperature-regulating long-sleeved shirts, (3) blouses / lighter sweaters, (1) pair of loose-fitting pants, (2) pairs of jeans/nicer pants, (1) dress, everything else in the other categories 

  • Tops

    • Basic temperature regulating t-shirt: No matter what the season, you’ll want at least one basic temperature regulating shirt, like this one. This T is specially made to be moisture-wicking, anti-odor, and offer SPF protection. Plus, it doesn’t look like an exercise top but still offers a lot of the benefits of high-performance clothing. It’s cute enough to be dressed up with a cardigan or nice scarf. If you decide you love these shirts and want more, try this one.
    • Insect repellant top: Honestly, you’ll probably only need this top in the summer since insects and mosquitos in Egypt are pretty dormant in winter. If you’re particularly concerned, you can also purchase Permethrin spray to spray on your clothing before you go. It lasts up to six washes.
    • Long-sleeved temperature regulating top: If you’re traveling in the winter, you probably want more than just one of these tops. Winter in Egypt is mild: fairly warm during the day and cool at night. You’ll want temperature regulating tops that account for the variation in temperature. Even if you travel during the summer and you end up hiking or camping, you’ll want at least one of these tops.
    • Blouses / Shirts: For the rest of the time when you’re out and about, you’ll want to bring along some cute tops (short or long-sleeved depending on your sensitivity to the sun). People generally don’t dress sloppily so keep that in mind when choosing clothes. Just make sure whatever you pack is lightweight!
    • Cardigan: Having a cardigan on hand for cool evenings or for entering mosques is a must. You’ll also want an additional layer if you take a bus/train/plane anywhere.
  • Bottoms

    • Lightweight, loose pants: If you’re going to Egypt in the summer, you’ll want loose and lightweight everything, including pants. I’m a fan of this particular style but anything lightweight, but not sloppy, will do. If you’re traveling in winter, you’ll probably want just one pair of lightweight pants and two pairs of jeans. Mix and match according to the season and your personal style.
    • Jeans/nicer pants: If it’s summer, don’t bother bringing jeans. It’s way too hot to wear them. However, you’ll probably want to bring along at least one pair of nicer pants for evenings. If you’re traveling during winter, you’ll want to bring a few pairs of jeans/nice pants and maybe one pair of lightweight ones. Mix and match according to the season. Anyway, prAna is my go-to brand of choice for pants that are comfortable for all-day travel and outdoor activities without being ugly. They also have nice jeans as well!
    • Skirts: If you’re traveling to Egypt in winter, you probably only need one skirt, if any at all. During summer, a couple will do. Make sure they’re long and they match with your tops!
  • Dresses

    • Dress: If you’re traveling during summer, bring one nicer casual dress that you can wear both during the day and in the evening. If you’re traveling during winter, you can bring one just in case or bring a skirt and a nice top. Either way, make sure you bring something that covers below the knee and either covers your shoulders or can be paired with a cardigan.
  • Scarves

    • Secret pocket scarf: One of my favorite minimalist hacks for travel is to bring several scarves and several basic shirts and mixing and matching them to make it look like a whole new outfit. Cool trick, right? My favorite scarf to pack for every trip is this secret pocket scarf. It’s cute and functional and has the added bonus of having a hidden pocket, where you can keep your passport, some money, or any other valuable you’re worried about.
    • Large scarf or shawl: Having a large scarf on hand is super helpful for impromptu mosque visits or to protect your skin when the sun is feeling just a little too strong. Plus, it’s a cute accessory for an outfit as well!
  • Swimwear

    • Swimsuit: Yes, you can wear a bikini in Egypt but a one piece is a little more respectful. Definitely no topless sunbathing or swimming.
    • Cover-up: Out of respect, bring a cover-up and wear it if you’re lounging around a resort or hotel.
    • Sun hat: Your skin will want a break from the strong Egyptian sun, especially if you’re prone to burning. Check out your options here.
    • Sunglasses: No explanation necessary. Yes, you need them in winter too.
  • Outerwear and Underwear

    • (2) Bras, (1) workout bra, (7) underwear: I always bring this workout bra for outdoorsy days or if I want to hit the hotel gym because it keeps moisture and smells away. Same goes for this underwear (plus, it dries quickly for easy washing). I also pack a couple of my regular t-shirt bras and voila. Done with undergarments.
    • Moisture-wicking socks: These moisture-wicking socks are perfect for all-day wear without smelly or sweaty feet. Just a few pairs will do.
    • Fleece: Even in the summer, you’ll want to bring a fleece for potential early morning hikes, overnight camping trips, or for dealing with freezing cold long-distance buses and trains.
    • Packable down jacket: There are some winter days when it gets pretty chilly so a proper jacket does come in handy. I really like this packable one because it’s warm but doesn’t take up much room in your suitcase.
  • Pajamas

    • I like bringing leggings and a basic t-shirt to wear as pajamas just in case there’s an off chance I need to wash them and wear them as clothes in a pinch. Or layer with them if it gets cold. Either way, don’t forget pajamas.
  • Shoes

    • Sandals: I love these Keen sandals because they’re cute and super comfortable to walk in all day. I bring them with me everywhere and they haven’t failed me yet. If you prefer hiking sandals, I’ve used these in Costa Rica and they’re perfect for the great outdoors.
    • Flats: I pretty much live in flats and sandals but it’s taken me a long time and lots of trial and error to find some that are cute, comfortable and durable. Both the Sketchers Ballet Flat and BOBS shoes fit the bill. I usually bring both with me when I travel but you really only need one pair of flats.
    • All-purpose sneakers: Last year, a friend of mine introduced me to Allbirds, these awesome wool sneakers that don’t make your feet sweat (even if you wear them without socks). Then I found out they’re made of Merino Wool, which explains the magic behind them. They’re cute, they’re functional, and they’re comfy AF. You can wear them to hike up a mountain or to explore a new city. They’re my go-to travel shoes and if they get dirty, I can throw them in the wash. These are especiallyvisiting The Pyramids useful when and other historical sites!
    • Water shoes (optional): If you’re headed to the beach and don’t want to jump in with your sandals, you’ll definitely want to pack this pair of water shoes. A lot of the beaches in Egypt have pointed jagged rocks and some even have sea urchins. Lesson learned the hard way. If you’re planning on swimming, you’ll need to wear some sort of footwear into the water.
Ain el Sokhna, a beach a few hours from Cairo Egypt
Ain Sokhna, a beach a few hours from Cairo

What to Pack: Toiletries and Accessories 

  • Oral care: Don’t forget to pack your toothbrush, toothpaste, and floss sticks along. Your favorite brands might be a little more expensive so it’s easier to just bring your stuff with you.
  • Razors: I like to avoid looking like I just shaved my legs for the first time so I never use crappy hotel razors. I use the ultra-compact yet powerful Venus Snap for shorter trips. If you don’t have sensitive skin, you can easily pick up a razor at a pharmacy in Egypt.
  • Deodorant: Cause…sweat.
  • Shampoo, Conditioner, Leave-in conditioner, and Soap: Word to the wise – your favorite hair and skincare brands (especially if you use ultra-niche or expensive brands) might not be available in Egypt or might be really expensive. I personally bring solid shampoo and conditioner bars because they’re lighter, last way longer, and don’t spill on your stuff. I like this shampoo bar and this conditioner bar, but of course, buy/bring whatever suits your hair type. Leave-in conditioner is a must because the water in Egypt has some funky things in it that will dry out your hair. I like this one and this one. As for soap, I bring along the miraculous Dr. Bronner’s Castille Soap, which you can use to clean yourself, clothing, dishes, and more. I learned about it from some traveling friends a few years ago and now it’s my go-to travel soap!
  • Hand Sanitizer and face wipes: Egypt is a dry desert that’s dusty AF, which means you’ll be experiencing the lovely combination of being sweaty and sandy. Fun! Face wipes or baby wipes will help you stay refreshed and cleanish, while hand sanitizer is useful for general…er, sanitizing. Especially if a bathroom isn’t handy or it doesn’t have soap (also learned from personal experience, sigh).
  • Makeup: I’ve never been much of a makeup queen and generally get by with tinted moisturizer, mascaraeyebrow pencil, eyeliner, and lipstick both on the road and at home. However, my makeup-loving younger sister says that yes, you do need these great travel-sized brushes and that you should buy travel-sized versions of your favorite makeup if you really can’t go makeup minimalist for a week or two. Just know that anything that’s prone to melting (in the case or off your face) probably isn’t best to bring anyway.
  • Chapstick: Use it often and buy the SPF kind. If your lips aren’t drying out from the air, they’re getting sunburned from the sun.
  • Sunscreen: I’m 100% African and I’ve gotten sunburned in Egypt. So even if you’ve never burned before, don’t test your luck and pack some good sunscreen. It’s expensive in Egypt and not always easy to find because locals don’t use it. For everyday use, I use Neutrogena Clear Face Sunscreen because my skin is prone to acne. The original Neutrogena sunscreen is just as good if acne is a non-issue. Neither will leave your skin feeling gross and greasy. For the rest of me, I use the solid body stick, which works well. My friends who dive told me that the chemicals in sunscreen are really bad for the ocean though, so if you’re going swimming, they recommend All Good Sunscreen, which is safe for reefs and the planet. The more you know!
  • Insect repellent: If you’re traveling to Egypt in the summer, you’ll definitely want insect repellent. It’s not as bad as when you’re traveling to tropical destinations, but even so, the mosquitos are pretty relentless. This insect repellent specifically was voted number one in consumer tests and I can vouch for that fact that I’ve gotten fewer bites using it. Plus, you can use it on your clothes and your skin and it doesn’t make you feel or smell gross!
  • Chafing gel: The only time I ever wish for a thigh gap is when it’s hot and I’m wearing a skirt or dress. Chub rub, that uncomfortable rawness you get between your thighs from them rubbing together, is very real, especially when it’s hot out. I used this anti-chafing balm all summer long while I was in Egypt, and my only disappointment is how long it took me to figure out that it’s a thing that exists.
  • Menstruation things: If pads are your period weapon of choice (and you don’t want to pack some), you can easily find your favorite brands in Egypt. However, tampons and menstrual cups are nearly impossible to find so do yourself a favor and pack some along with you.
  • Skincare: As much as I’m a makeup minimalist, I’m somewhat of a skincare maximalist. I use a variety of products, which I pack into these teeny travel containers. What I don’t skimp on, though, is face moisturizer, and neither should you. Your skin will dry out from the heat and all that sun. I love the Cerave PM moisturizer (shout out to my dermatologist!) and this bottle comes in a 3 oz size, which makes it TSA-friendly. Don’t forget to pack a good body lotion too. Your body needs hydration as well.
  • Miscellaneous: In terms of jewelry, I usually bring 3 pairs of earrings plus what I’m already wearing, and a few cute and matching bracelets and necklaces. Not necessities but I gotta be cute, ok? I also pack a waterproof phone pouch (more for keeping my phone dry than taking good underwater photos), and this perfume bottle atomizer so I can bring my favorite perfume along. Lastly, don’t forget a hairbrush, hair ties and bobby pins.
Planning a trip to Egypt? This Egypt packing list includes everything you'll need to pack no matter what the season, plus a guide on what to wear in Egypt! | Egypt Packing List | What to Pack for Egypt | What to Wear in Egypt
Colossi of Memnon, Luxor, Egypt – taken on my Intrepid tour to Egypt

Travel Safety and First Aid

  • Travel Insurance: Yes, you need travel insurance for if things (hopefully don’t but often do) go wrong. I’ve been sick, needed stitches, crashed a rental car, had cash stolen and have dealt with luggage delays. Let’s just say I’ve learned my lesson about travel insurance the hard way. My go-to insurance is World Nomads cause they’re awesome. Be sure to check out the different plan options to pick one that’s right for you!
  • Luggage Locks: Your stuff can definitely get stolen from your suitcase, whether you’re going through airport security, taking a bus or train, or staying at a hostel (or hotel, even). I’m not saying it’s going to happen, but I’m a worrywart and like to prepare for the worst. So I bring a couple of these small TSA-approved locks with me whenever I travel. Sure, I can’t stop someone from running off with my entire bag, but at least I can stop pickpockets in their track, heyyyy!
  • Anti Diarrheal: First of all, hate to break it to you, but there’s a really high chance you will get diarrhea in Egypt. Maybe an upset stomach too. I don’t know what it is about the food (it’s too yummy, maybe?) but it took me like four visits until I was able to rid myself of it. Many people travel with Imodium, every traveler’s favorite treatment for travel diarrhea. My doctor tells me that you shouldn’t stop whatever is making you sick from leaving your system. However, I totally get that there are times where “better out than in” just doesn’t work. So bring Imodium if you’d like, but use it only when you need to.
  • Rehydration Salts: Egypt is hot and if you’re out and about all day, it’s easy to get dehydrated. Diarrhea also doesn’t help. These rehydration salts are perfect for electrolyte replenishment, especially when you can’t keep anything down. I speak from personal experience here.
  • Advil: I always bring some pain reliever with me in case of body aches, cramps, etc. They’re just good to have.
  • Dramamine: I’m thankful that my motion sickness only warrants medication when I’m on a boat, but I totally get that others are more sensitive. If you end up on a camping trip of some sort or take long-distance public transportation, chances are high you’ll be in for a bumpy ride. I prefer the non-drowsy Dramamine so I can still be a functioning human being during the day (not that naps aren’t nice too).
  • Travel First Aid Kit: I love that this travel first aid kit is small enough to stick in your bag but still has tons of items in it. I’d remove the scissors if you aren’t planning to check your luggage, but otherwise, this is incredibly handy, especially if you’re going to be doing outdoorsy things.
Planning a trip to Egypt? This Egypt packing list includes everything you'll need to pack no matter what the season, plus a guide on what to wear in Egypt! | Egypt Packing List | What to Pack for Egypt | What to Wear in Egypt
The otherworldy White Desert

What to Pack: Electronics

  • VPN: For those of you who don’t know, a VPN (virtual private network) is a service that allows you to securely and privately route your internet through a server. Basically, it makes your internet think you’re in one place when you’re in a different one. Why do you need this? Well, if you want to access your bank account or any secure online account, the sites get super sketched out when you’re in a foreign country. It makes accessing some of these sites annoying or downright impossible. Another reason to get a VPN is that there are a fair amount of sites that are blocked in Egypt. It’s mostly news and pop culture sites, but it’s still a pain. Quite a few VPNs don’t work in Egypt but luckily, NordVPN is powerful enough to get around all the blocks. Yay for internet security!
  • Power bank: I don’t know if I’m a phone addict or what (jk, the answer to that is an unfortunate but resounding yes) but I legit don’t understand how people can travel without a power bank. You’re out and about all day and using your phone to navigate, take photos, and who knows what else. I always carry my Anker PowerCore while I’m out. It’s light, holds multiple charges, and charges phones quickly. Win!
  • An eSIM: Once upon a time, I used to collect SIM cards like 90’s kids collected Beanie Babies. I had one for each country I visited and multiple phone numbers I could never remember. Why? So I could always have internet (I’m an addict and I know it). Nowadays, I use an eSIM. I get internet pretty much everywhere and can use it for multiple devices. Plus, I get to keep my actual number and contacts in my phone. Win!
  • Universal travel adapter: After accidentally bringing the wrong plug for a country multiple times, I learned my lesson and bought a couple of universal travel adapters. You can use them in every country and never have to worry about plugs again, yay! This one also has USB slots, which is super handy if you are mainly charging phones, cameras, and tablets. I usually pack two just in case and charge all my stuff with a power strip (linked below).
  • Travel Camera(s): I know all the cool kids are about that #iPhoneOnly life, but I still like taking photos with a camera. Does that make me old? Whatever, I’m embracing it. Anyway, for adventure footage and photos, the latest GoPro is seriously the best. It’s waterproof, image stabilizing, and a bunch of other cool features. If you’re looking for a nice digital camera that doesn’t involve complicated lenses, I personally use the Sony RX100 II, which I’m obsessed with. This is the older model (I think they’re on the 6 now) but it works great. The Carl Zeiss lens helps take spectacular, high-quality photos but the camera is small enough to fit in a purse. I also bring my Instax Mini 9 with me cause I’m extra like that, but I also understand that most normal people don’t travel with three cameras.
  • Kindle: Confession: I’m low-key a book fiend and chances are high that I’m currently in the middle of reading something. As a traveler, I don’t have the luxury of taking up precious space in my suitcase with a book or three. I was uncertain about buying a Kindle initially, but it’s one of the best purchases I’ve ever made. Not only can you keep guidebooks on there, but it’s also nice to be able to read at your leisure on those long distance trips or at the beach. This particular Kindle magically blocks sun glare somehow (sorcery, I tell you!), which is why I prefer it to reading on a tablet.
  • Portable Travel Strip (optional): If you’re one of those annoying people charging your phone, laptop, and camera at the same time (read: me), bringing a small travel strip along makes powering your devices that much more efficient. I know I’m extra. Sorry, not sorry.
  • Headphones: There are a lot of things that suck about planes, but bad headphones don’t have to be one of them. The small Bose Noise Cancelling Headphones do a pretty good job of blocking ambient sound on airplanes (and everywhere else). They’re small and they’re wired, making them much more practical for travel than the bulky over-ear headphones.
  • Laptop/Tablet (optional): I work online for a living, so I always bring my MacBook Air with me. I don’t like or use tablets personally. However, you might want to bring along a lightweight laptop or your tablet just in case. Travel planning is hard to do on a smartphone (which you should also bring by the way).
Koshary, the national food of Egypt
Koshary, the national food of Egypt. Photo by Mohamed Elma’andi courtesy of Bellies en-Route

What to Pack: Travel Accessories

  • Insulated water bottle and water purifier or water purifying bottle: I always bring a water bottle with me when I travel because single-use plastic sucks for the planet and buying lots of bottled water is expensive and inconvenient. If you’re wondering if you can drink the tap water in Egypt, the answer is a resounding no. What you can do is drink filtered, purified water. I bring along a Steripen, a UV water purifier that gets rid of 99.9% of bacteria, viruses, and protozoa and use it in combination with my CamelBak Insulated Water Bottle. This bottle is particularly awesome because it holds 20 oz and keeps water cold, which you’ll want in a hot country like Egypt. If you’d rather purchase an all-in-one solution, Grayl’s water filtering bottle is a great alternative so you can fill directly from the tap and drink almost immediately.
  • Microfiber towel: Pretty much all hotels will have towels for use on hand, but I find that it’s always nice to have a towel I can use when I travel, whether I’m on the beach, at an impromptu picnic, or just a bit chilly. This Wise Owl Camping Towel dries super quickly, takes up almost no room and comes with a bonus face/hand towel for hikes and outdoor activities. I always bring it with me when I travel, whether I’m staying in a hostel or not.
  • Travel pillow: First of all, if you don’t already use a travel pillow while you’re on a plane, I’m seriously impressed because I can’t board a flight without one! In Egypt, you’ll definitely want to bring one along, not just for the plane but also for sleeping on long-distance trains and/or buses. Best believe I’m recommending that dorky but ultra comfortable Trtl travel pillow. It’s super comfortable and designed to hold your head in a proper sleeping position. Plus, it’s easy to just attach to your backpack when you aren’t using it so you don’t have to worry about bending the brace.
  • Eye mask and earplugs: I have the hardest time sleeping pretty much anywhere that isn’t a bed, which I know is ridiculous considering how often I travel. I find that making my environment as quiet and dark as possible helps, which is why I travel with both earplugs and this funny-looking eye mask. If you’re planning on staying in the city center (especially in Cairo), there’s a high chance that the street noise will be annoying enough to interrupt your sleep. I highly recommend bringing earplugs, even if you don’t sleep with them normally.
  • Travel toilet paper: Toilet paper isn’t always a thing in Egypt, because people use bidets to keep their booties clean. I never understood why there isn’t toilet paper to dry off, but now I know to bring my own and I’m passing that wisdom on to you. You can always buy toilet paper while there or take some from your hotel, but I like to keep some of these small toilet paper rolls in my purse and not worry about it. Toilet seat covers are 100% not a thing (like at all outside of North America from what I’ve seen) so if you’re particularly worried about hygiene, there are also travel toilet seat covers. Note: don’t flush anything down the toilet in Egypt, not even toilet paper. The pipes can’t handle it. 
  • Sleeping bag liner: I’m not a germaphobe by any means but have camped and stayed in hostels enough times to know that sometimes the bedding is…questionable. Or just plain uncomfortable. This silk sleeping bag liner will make you feel ultra-luxurious and put a barrier between you and your bedding, which has made me feel better while camping in The White Desert, sleeping on a felucca, and staying in budget hotels.
  • Travel clothesline: This travel clothesline has been my lifesaver when I’ve hand-washed clothing or have a wet swimsuit or towel that I need to dry. Although doing laundry in Egypt is really inexpensive, it may not be worth the hassle if you have just a few things to wash or are moving through cities quickly. The clothesline is more a nice to have rather than a must-have depending on your travel style.
  • Egyptian Arabic Phrasebook: This Arabic phrasebook is more of a nice to have than a necessity. However, you might find it particularly useful if you’re traveling through Egypt independently, especially if you’re not at tourist sites. Google Translate works in a pinch, but it translates to Modern Standard Arabic, not Egyptian Arabic, which sounds really different.
  • Lonely Planet Guidebook: I’m one of those people who uses blogs to plan my trip but brings along a guidebook when I’m in another country. I know it’s weird, but I like having a reference along. Totally not a necessity if you’ve done proper research and/or have internet access.
Planning a trip to Egypt? This Egypt packing list includes everything you'll need to pack no matter what the season, plus a guide on what to wear in Egypt! | Egypt Packing List | What to Pack for Egypt | What to Wear in Egypt
Appropriate attire to wear in Egypt. Taken in front of Abu Simbel

More Egypt Resources

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10 thoughts on “What to Pack for Egypt: The Ultimate Egypt Packing List

  1. Dawn Alliman says:

    Thank you, Sally. I’m hoping to go to Egypt in September (fingers crossed!). This is exactly what I was looking for.


    • Sally says:

      It depends if you’re more interested in seeing the mummified body (Tut) or colorful hieroglyphs (Ramses). This article might help: https://www.earthtrekkers.com/best-tombs-to-visit-in-the-valley-of-the-kings-luxor/

      Have so much fun on your trip!

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