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From Sharm to Cairo and back


Page update - Aug 31, 2023

How quickly and inexpensively to see Cairo if you're staying at a hotel in Sharm El-Sheikh? How much do bus and plane tickets cost? How much is a cab or a transfer? Or maybe it's more profitable to buy an excursion? Read the answers on this page.

The prices, timetables, and other information on this page were updated in August 2023. The Sharm-Cairo bus prices have increased in the last six months! Read all the current prices below on this page.

Important news

In November 2019, a new highway between Sharm El-Sheikh and Cairo opened. In fact, it is not a completely new road, but some sections were re-done. According to the authorities, the travel time was reduced to 4 hours. In reality, the time has indeed decreased, but to 5-6 hours (previously it was 6-7). But it's still good news.

Distance between Sharm and Cairo

The distance in a straight line is 225 miles (360 kilometers).

The distance by road is 310 miles (500 kilometers).

Important! How to cross the Suez Canal?

The city and resort of Sharm El-Sheikh is located on the Sinai Peninsula, which is part of Asia. But Cairo is already in Africa. Sinai and the main (African) part of Egypt are separated by the Suez Canal, which you need to cross somehow.

In older times, this used to be a big problem - you had to take a ferry across. But now there is an underground tunnel named after Ahmed Hamdi. The Ahmed Hamdi tunnel is located near Shallufah (just north of the city of Suez). Usually, cars and buses from Sharm to Cairo go through this tunnel. The length of the tunnel - 5,380 feet (1,640 meters), width - 38 feet (11.6 meters), the road has only two lanes, the depth - up to 167 feet (51 meters).

At 75 miles (120 kilometers) to the north, there is a bridge Al Salam (aka The Bridge of Egyptian-Japanese Friendship). But it is inconvenient because you have to make a very long detour.

An important point!

Along the highway between Sharm El-Sheikh and Cairo there are more than a dozen police and army checkpoints. Any stop by the police at such checkpoints can lead to a thorough inspection of the vehicle, and therefore a huge waste of time.

In addition, Ahmed Hamdi Tunnel (under the Suez Canal) has only one lane each way. Any accident inside, and there is a giant traffic jam. Egyptian drivers chronically do not follow traffic rules. They drive very risky, hence the many accidents. As a result, the death rate on Egyptian roads is 10 times higher than in the UK and 4.5 times higher than in the US.

For all these reasons, traveling by cab, rental car, or shuttle service is the last thing we recommend!

How many days in Cairo?

One day is not enough. Even if you have a cab at your disposal, you will only have time to see the Great Pyramids of Egypt and the Great Sphinx, the Cairo Museum, the Cairo Citadel and the Mosque of Mohammed Ali. And if you decide to ride the Cairo Metro, you might not even see this short list.

By the way, tourists on the guided tours see even less, because the tourists are taken to papyrus, perfume, and spices stores, which are terribly annoying.

To see all the main attractions without rushing and still be able to visit Khan el-Khalili bazaar, the Old City, Gezira Island, the Mall of Egypt, it is better to plan two days.

You can get a room in a normal hotel in Cairo for 40-50 dollars, booking.com to help, there are hundreds of options.

Details of each option

By plane

The Sharm El-Sheikh-Cairo route is very busy with 7 or 8 flights per day. EgyptAir, AlMasria Universal, and Nile Air are in charge.

The price of a round-trip ticket starts at 150 US dollars.

Flight time is nearly 1 hour. But don't forget the extra time spent waiting for boarding and security checks. The actual travel time is nearly 3 hours.

You should take a cab from your hotel to Sharm El-Sheikh airport. It is also more convenient to travel around Cairo by cab, thankfully it is quite inexpensive in Egypt. Read our review "Taxis in Egypt".

We strongly recommend you buy tickets in advance. A week ahead of time, travel agencies start to buy tickets for their customers, and the prices can significantly increase. Although it happens that prices are on the contrary drop, it all depends on the demand for tours.

For vacationers in Dahab, Nuweiba, and Taba, we recommend planning the trip carefully as you need to consider the time to the Sharm El-Sheikh airport. The roads in Sinai are winding, the police at the checkpoints like to make checks. If you are late, the plane will not wait.

By bus

The travel time by bus is 7-8 hours.

There are three bus companies on the Sharm El-Sheikh-Cairo route: Go Bus El-Gouna, SuperJet Bus Egypt, East Delta Bus. Bus station in Sharm El-Sheikh is located in the Al Rowysat area. It is far from the hotels so you have to take a cab. The cab ride cost from Sharm El-Sheikh hotels is between 20 and 120 egyptian pounds. See our page "Money in Egypt" for the current exchange rates.

The best option is Go Bus El-Gouna

The main convenience is that this company has a website in English - go-bus.com/en. You can see the current schedule and ticket prices on the site.

An important point! Go Bus now has two bus stations in Sharm (previously there was only one). And these stations are far from each other (6 kilometers or 3.7 miles). Look out not to be confused. Look carefully at what is written in your reservation (ticket).

The first Ruwaisat station is located approximately in the center of the resort. This is the central bus station, and the buses by East Delta, Blue Bus, Super Jet depart from there. The second bus station Wataniya is located to the south.

On the website, search for "From" selection "Sharm El-Sheikh (Royssat)" or "Sharm Gobus Station". At "To" selection "Cairo (Tahrir)" or "Cairo (Giza)". At "Travel Date" choose the date of your trip.

Please note that Go Bus buses arrive in Cairo to different parts of the city: either in Tahrir Square (city center), or to Giza (where the Great Egyptian Pyramids are), or to the area of Almasa (near the airport). Accordingly, you can choose your destination depending on where you want to go.

The ticket prices range from 220 to 600 egyptian pounds, depending on the bus class. We advise taking tickets on the Royal, Delux Plus, or Aero buses, where the cabin has a clean toilet, air conditioning, an LCD screen with movies in front of each seat, drinks and snacks included.

Go Bus now has 20 runs a day to Cairo, including 6 night runs (5 to Tahrir, 1 to Giza). The selection is excellent. You will arrive in Cairo at one of the Go Bus stations, and at the same station you can take the bus back.

At go-bus.com/en you can buy tickets in advance and pay by Mastercard or VISA. When buying tickets you can choose your seats. However, there is not much point in buying tickets in advance, as the buses are rarely full. Only on Thursdays (the last working day of the week) and on the days before holidays you might not get a ticket. For the public holidays calendar, see our page "Public holidays in Egypt".

For all the features of traveling by bus in Egypt and many important tips, read our editor-in-chief's detailed review "How to ride buses in Egypt".

SuperJet and East Delta buses

They are difficult to use, because it is difficult to find the current timetable. The SuperJet has a web-site www.superjet.com.eg, but it is so far only in Arabic. East Delta has a recent website www.eastdelta-travel.com, but it's also in Arabic only.

Theoretically, you could go to the bus station to see the timetable and buy the tickets in advance. If you don't feel sorry for time and money for a cab, you can do that. You can go to the nearest travel agency, and they will book tickets for a small fee on the SuperJet or East Delta.

But the benefits are unlikely to come from this. The prices of all three bus companies are about the same. It's better to use the Go Bus company.

By cab

The cab ride usually costs 100-120 US dollars. Naturally, no one will drive that distance on the meter, and you need to negotiate with the cab driver for a fixed rate.

Naturally, not every cab driver will agree to drive that far. However, if you ask around, there will be some cab drivers who will agree. Therefore, it is not even necessary to book a cab in advance. But we strongly advise you to make an appointment in advance!

If you agree on a round trip + Cairo city + back, it's possible to bargain for 200 US dollars for all these services. This is very beneficial to you and the cab driver, as he will not go back empty.

Ordering a transfer

Now there are many sites on the Internet where you can order a transfer. However, it is expensive - from 180 to 220 US dollars one way.

In addition, think about such a problem. It is easy to book a transfer from Sharm to Cairo, you will only need to specify the name of your hotel, where you will need to be picked up. And how will you explain about the return trip? From which point in Cairo will you be picked up?

1 day bus excursion

A bus excursion usually costs 55-70 US dollars.

It includes a trip to Cairo, a tour of the Great Pyramids and the Cairo Museum of Antiquities, lunch (drinks are charged separately), shopping, and a return trip.

In terms of price, it is a good option, but the disadvantages are obvious: you will see only the minimum of sights, you will arrive in rush hour, there will be a minimum of time for sightseeing. There will be your language speaking guide, who will know the age of the building of the pyramids with a 90% probability, but no more than that.

You will leave the hotel at 3-4 am, and return after midnight.

1 day excursion with flight

The program is exactly the same as in the previous case, but only fly by plane. The average price is 170-200 US dollars. You will leave the hotel at 6-7 am, return at 9-10 pm.

Comparison of options

The round-trip costs are in the table below:

1 person 2 persons 3 persons 4 persons
Bus (7-8 hours) 8-20 USD* 16-40* 24-60* 32-80*
Airplane (3 hours) 150 USD 300 450 600
Cab (6-7 hours) 200 USD** 200** 200** 200**
Transfer (6-7 hours) 400 USD 400 400 400
Excursion by bus 60 USD 120 180 240
Excursion with flight 180 USD 360 540 720

* - the ticket price depends on the bus class

** - the cost for "trip there + city + trip back"

Important tips

- An All Inclusive hotel wristband on your wrist will lure pickpockets and crooks. Try to talk to the manager at the hotel to have the bracelet cut off before the trip, and given a new one on your return;

- In Cairo, you can pay almost everywhere only in egyptian pounds. To avoid wasting time in Cairo, we recommend changing money in advance. Read our page "Currency exchange in Egypt";

- Do not forget to take your documents - insurance and passport. Familiarize yourself in advance with the conditions of insurance and contact phone numbers;

- Do not forget that Cairo is hotter than the Red Sea resorts. Do not forget the headgear, and it is highly recommended to cover your shoulders, so as not to get burned. We wrote about the clothes on the page "What to take to Egypt".

Have a great trip to Cairo, and read our interesting pages about Egypt (see the list of the pages below).

TIPS FOR TOURISTS

What Don't Do in Egypt

Cheats of Tourists in Egypt

What to Take to Egypt

Sharks in Egypt

To Egypt With Kids

How NOT to Get Poisoned in Egypt

National Holidays in Egypt

Weather in Egypt by Month

MONEY AND EXPENSES

What Money in Egypt

Money Exchange in Egypt

How Much Money to Take to Egypt

TRANSPORT

Taxi in Egypt

Cairo Metro

From Hurghada to Cairo

From Sharm to Cairo

From Hurghada to Luxor

From Cairo to Ain Sokhna

Intercity Buses - Guide

GIFTS, SOUVENIRS, CUSTOMS LAW

What to Bring from Egypt

What You Can & Not Bring in Egypt

What You Can & Not Take out of Egypt

ABOUT EGYPT

What Language is Spoken in Egypt

Who Are the Modern Egyptians

Friday & Weekends in Egypt

Ramadan in Egypt

TELECOM

Internet in Egypt Cheaply

RESORT REGIONS

Sharm El Sheikh

Naama Bay

Hurghada

Ain Sokhna

Mediterranean Rivera

BAD HABITS

Alcohol in Egypt - Prices & Rules

Local Egyptian Alcohol

Cigarettes & Smoking in Egypt

Vape and iQos in Egypt

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