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Egypt – Rail Travel

Egypt has a long history of rail travel, with the first railway line being built in 1854. Today, the rail network in Egypt is run by the state-owned company Egyptian National Railways (ENR), which operates passenger trains for both tourists and locals. In this article, we will explore the standard of rail travel in Egypt, the different classes of service, where to find information on timetables and tickets, and more.

Overall Standard of Rail Travel in Egypt

The overall standard of rail travel in Egypt is decent, but the quality of the trains and stations can vary widely. While some trains offer modern amenities, others are outdated and uncomfortable. Additionally, the rail network in Egypt is vast, with many different routes and destinations to choose from.

Classes of Rail Travel in Egypt

There are two classes of rail travel in Egypt: standard and first. The main differences between the classes are the level of comfort and amenities provided.

  • Standard class: This is the most basic class of service, with standard seats and no air conditioning. Some trains have dining cars where passengers can purchase food and drinks.

  • First class: This class offers more comfortable seats and additional amenities such as air conditioning and a buffet car with snacks and drinks included in the ticket price.

Finding Information on Rail Timetables and Ticket Prices

The best place to find information on rail timetables and ticket prices in Egypt is on the Egyptian National Railways website (https://enr.gov.eg). The website has a user-friendly interface and provides detailed information on the different train routes, schedules, and ticket prices.

Buying Rail Tickets and Reservations in Egypt

Rail tickets and reservations can be purchased directly from the Egyptian National Railways website, at train stations, or from authorized travel agents. It’s recommended to book in advance, especially during peak travel periods, as trains can sell out quickly.

Contact details for Egyptian National Railways are as follows:


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Types of Rail Tickets and Discounts

There are several types of rail tickets available in Egypt, including one-way, round-trip, and multi-ride tickets. The prices vary depending on the class of service and the distance traveled.

Egyptian National Railways also offers several discounts, including:

  • Student discounts: Students with a valid ID receive a 50% discount on standard class tickets.
  • Senior citizen discounts: Passengers over the age of 60 are eligible for a 50% discount on standard class tickets.
  • Children discounts: Children under the age of 6 travel for free. Children between the ages of 6 and 11 receive a 50% discount on standard class tickets.

Rail Travel for Disabled Passengers

The rail network in Egypt is generally not very accessible for disabled passengers. Most trains do not have wheelchair access, and the stations are not equipped with ramps or elevators. However, some newer trains do have facilities for disabled passengers, such as wider doors and wheelchair ramps. It’s recommended to contact Egyptian National Railways in advance to inquire about the availability of these facilities on specific trains.

Underground Trains or Metros in Urban Areas

Egypt has two metro systems in urban areas: the Cairo Metro and the Alexandria Tram.

Cairo Metro

The Cairo Metro is the first underground railway system in Africa and the Middle East. It has three lines and 64 stations, covering a total distance of 77.9 kilometers. The metro runs from 5:00 am to midnight on weekdays and from 6:00 am to midnight on weekends.

The Cairo Metro is modern and well-maintained, with air conditioning and Wi-Fi onboard. The trains run frequently, with a maximum wait time of 3 minutes during peak hours. The metro is also affordable, with a one-way ticket costing between 5-7 Egyptian pounds (EGP).

Alexandria Tram

The Alexandria Tram, also known as the Alexandria Light Rail Transit, is a tramway system that runs along the coast of Alexandria. It has two lines and 30 stations, covering a total distance of 32.5 kilometers. The tram runs from 5:00 am to midnight on weekdays and from 6:00 am to midnight on weekends.

The Alexandria Tram is a modern and convenient mode of transport, with air conditioning and Wi-Fi onboard. The trams run frequently, with a maximum wait time of 10 minutes during peak hours. The tram is also affordable, with a one-way ticket costing 3 EGP.

In conclusion, rail travel in Egypt offers a decent way to explore the country’s diverse landscapes. There are two classes of service available, with options for every budget. Information on timetables and ticket prices can be found on the Egyptian National Railways website, and tickets can be purchased online or at train stations. Discounts are available for students, senior citizens, and children. While the rail network in Egypt is generally not very accessible for disabled passengers, some newer trains do have facilities for disabled passengers. The Cairo Metro and Alexandria Tram provide modern and efficient modes of transport in urban areas.


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