Want to know more about the currency in Egypt? They use Egyptian Pounds (EGP), and here’s more info about ATMs, money and exchange rates before your trip.

I will also answer some of the most frequently asked questions about money and currency in Egypt.

Quick facts about Egyptian Pound (EGP)

  • Name: Egyptian Pound.
  • Date of introduction: 1836.
  • Coin: 1 pound.
  • Subunit: 5, 10, 20, 25 and 50 piastrar.
  • Banknotes: 1, 5, 10, 20, 50,100 and 200 EGP.
  • Abbreviation: LE or .م)
  • Currency code: EGP
Egyptian currency

Photo: Shutterstock

Can you pay by card in Egypt?

Most larger hotels accept card payments, but the majority of places only accept cash. Of course, some restaurants and shops will accept debit and credit cards, but the standard is to pay by cash outside the major resorts. 

Should you exchange money before your trip?

Egyptian Pounds can be bought in various countries around the world, but it might not be possible to get more than a smaller sum due to a shortage of Egyptian currency abroad. Don’t worry though, you’re much better off by taking out cash from a local ATM or pay by card when possible. 

The rates given at exchange offices will usually make you lose up to €200 depending on how much you exchange. Also, tourists are only legally allowed to bring a maximum of 5000 EGP from abroad, which is equivalent to approximately 300 USD. 


Exchange currency in Egypt

Local currency exchange offices are available in tourist areas as well as major cities. However, it’s better to withdraw local currency from an ATM.

Money in Egypt

The Egyptian currency is Egyptian Pounds, and it’s the only legal tender in the country. However, many restaurants and tour operators, as well as hotels, will accept payments in Euros and US dollars. But it’s not recommended to pay in any other currency than Egyptian Pounds, due to the poor exchange rate. 

Many prices in tourist areas will be quoted in US dollars, but you can always pay in the local currency, which will save you some money. Most tour operators, restaurants and shop owners won’t accept card payments, so always carry cash with you. 

All Egyptian money have written text in both English and Arabic with a numeric value.

Money in Egypt

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ATMs in Egypt

Egyptian ATMs can be found in all cities, and they’re pretty straightforward to use. Larger resorts and hotels usually have their own ATMs as well. The Egyptian ATMs that I’ve used haven’t charged a local ATM fee, but it’s up to each individual bank to decide about these fees, and it might apply to a card from your country.

Your card issuer or bank is likely to charge an additional fee as well, usually around €5 per withdrawal + 1-2% in currency exchange fee. This can easily be avoided by using a travel card that has zero fees.

Also, remember to always choose to be charged in the local currency without conversion. And never use Euronet ATMs

Banks in Egypt

  • Al Ahli Bank of Kuwait
  • Banque du Caire
  • National Bank of Egypt
  • Bank of Alexandria
  • Credit Agricole
  • HSBC

More about Egypt’s currency (EGP)

The Egyptian Pound was introduced as the currency of Egypt in 1836, then only in coins. The banknotes were introduced in 1899 and replaced all other currencies in the country, such as the British pound. It is the Egyptian central bank (Al-Bank al-Markazī al-Masrī) that gives out the currency in Egypt, and they have their headquarters in Cairo.

The currency code is EGP, and the Egyptian-Arabic name of the currency is el-genēh el-maṣri. The images on the banknotes and coins reflect Egypt’s history. 

Egyptian money in various denominations

  • Coin: 1 pound.
  • Subunit: 5, 10, 20, 25 and 50 piastrar.
  • Banknotes: 1, 5, 10, 20, 50, 100 and 200 EGP.
Egyptian coins

Photo: Shutterstock

Frequently asked questions about money in Egypt

If you want to exchange money in Egypt, then US dollars or Euros are the best currencies to take to Egypt. But it’s even better if you use a travel card and withdraw cash from local ATMs. 

Yes, major hotels and resorts, as well as up-scale restaurants and large shops, will accept credit cards in Egypt. But there are still many shops, restaurants, tour operators, etc that don’t accept card payments. 

Yes, Egypt is still a cash-based society and you should always carry cash while traveling around the country. 

The currency in Hurghada is Egyptian Pounds, but Euros and US dollars are also accepted by most hotels and tour operators. 

Yes and no. US dollars are accepted in most tourist areas and hotels. But it’s better to pay with Egyptian pounds because you will get a better rate. 

Euros are widely accepted in tourist areas and hotels, but it’s not recommended to use because the rate given is often terrible. 

Egyptian money

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