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By No owner — last modified Jun 07, 2018 03:09 PM

 Egypt - Formalities


For full details on transiting the Suez Canal see Transit Information for the Suez Canal.

In ports of entry, clearance must be done with Customs, Health and Immigration, and a cruising permit obtained from Customs. The length of the cruising permit is tied to the length of the visa issued on arrival. Be sure to read further details on cruising permits below in Documents, as this will affect your choice of clearance port.

The majority of yachts coming from the south check into Egypt at Port Ghalib Marina or Hurghada Port. Port Ghalib is the recommended port of entry as fees at Hurghada Port are very high.

Yachts coming from the north check in at Port Said. Note however that clearance fees for foreign flagged yachts transiting south increased dramatically in May 2018. See fees below.

It is advisable to contact the marina or the shipping agent before arrival in order to confirm the rates and the formalities, in case there are any changes. As you can see above, when prices change they tend to quite dramatically!

The Coast Guard normally maintain a presence in all ports and anchorages, and usually visit the yacht, requesting details of the yacht and its crew.

It is highly likely you will need an agent at every major port as the authorities don’t usually speak English and will only deal with the agents they know. You have to let your agent know your whereabouts at all times so he can "smooth the way" with the authorities.

If sheltering from strong winds or making an overnight stop, yachts are normally allowed to stay in Egyptian waters before clearing in at an official port of entry. If coming from the Red Sea and intending to stop in Egypt before clearing in, it is advisable to have obtained a visa in advance. It is also advisable not to actually go ashore until officially clear in.

If transiting the Suez Canal and not stopping anywhere else after the transit, the outward clearance can be obtained while doing the transit formalities. Yachts may then proceed to sea as soon as they have dropped the pilot.

Once outward clearance is obtained, yachts must leave within 24 hours, or obtain another clearance.

Noonsite does not recommend any particular agent but there is a list of Clearance agents here. It can be useful to look at reports from cruisers for their various experiences with agents adjacent.

Last updated May 2018.


Visa on Arrival

If arriving in Egypt by boat, most nationalities are still issued visas on arrival. The cost is US$25.

This Entry Visa Fee was due to be increased on 1 March 2017 to US$ 60, however this increase has now been postponed until July 2017.

Most visas are valid for three months from the date of issue, however, not all ports can issue visas for this length of time. Port Ghalib immigration office, for example, can only issue visas for 1 month.

An extension to a visa can be obtained from the police. Passports must be valid for six months beyond the visa period.

Visa in Advance:

An E Visa can be obtained from the Egyptian Government E Visa Website. It is valid for 30 days and expires 90 days from the date of issue.

Citizens of some countries are required to obtain a visa in advance. These currently are:-
Palestine, Morocco, Tunisia, Algeria, Iraq, Somalia, Sudan, Mauritania, Lebanon, China, Afghanistan, Iran, Israel, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Burundi, Rwanda, Liberia, Nigeria, Niger, Ghana, Sierra Leone, Mali, Chad.

In addition, female citizens of the Republic of Moldova aged 15-35 are required to have a visa in advance.

There are Egyptian embassies or consulates in most nearby countries, including Israel (Tel Aviv) and Djibouti.

You may have difficulties leaving Egypt if your visa has expired. You will not normally be allowed to leave if the visa is out of date by more than 14 days.

If planning to visit Israel and return to Egypt, it is possible to buy a re-entry permit, which expires one day before the original visa expires.

See Egyptian Embassy website for more details.

Transiting the Suez Canal

Visas are not needed by anyone traveling on a yacht transiting the Suez Canal and remaining in the port area.

Last updated:  March 2019


Foreign flagged boats may stay up to one year from the date of arrival. After the one year boats need to be bonded for four months or leave the country for the same period.

A list of firearms, with their type and details, must be handed to the authorities on arrival.

A list of electronic equipment may also be required.

Last updated April 2018.


Boats arriving at a port in Egypt from Somalia, Sudan, Yemen, Bangladesh and Brunei Dar Alsam must have a Health Certificate issued by that country. However, a health certificate is not required if the boat spends a minimum of seven days at sea after leaving any of these ports before arriving at a port in Egypt.

Typhoid, tetanus, polio and hepatitis vaccinations are recommended, as is malaria prophylaxis.

Quarantine officials will ask for vaccination certificates if coming from a known yellow fever infected area.

Last updated:  April 2019


Documents required in Egypt:-
Port Clearance from your last Port of Call
Ships Registration Certificate
Ensure this looks genuine and is the original - yachts can be detained if their ship's registration does not look "authentic" enough. Also make sure that the words (Pleasure Yacht/ Craft) are included.
VHF Radio License
Insurance Certificate
Crew List
Passport for everyone on board

Note: It is recommended that the Crew List and scanned passports be emailed to the Agent well before getting to Suez.

Documents to be Completed on arrival:-
Passport control office declaration arrival
Ministry of transport Declaration of arrival
Notification for temporary clearance of yacht
Navigation equipment list

Cruising Permits:-

A cruising permit can be obtained on arrival.

The problem with the cruising permit is that the authorities issue it according to the duration of the visa of the yacht captain. This means that in order to obtain a 6 month cruising permit for instance, the Captain must have a valid visa for 6 months.

Not all ports can issue visas for this length of time. Port Ghalib immigration office, for example, can only issue visas for 1 month, so Customs are forced to issue 1 month cruising permits only. Hurghada have an immigration office that can give longer visas, which makes it easy for the yacht captain to decide from the beginning whether to ask for a 1 month visa or more.

If required, a permit to cruise the Gulf of Aqaba must be requested at the same time.

If it is only possible to obtain a 1 month cruising permit, an extension would require a shipping agent to do the paperwork.

If a boat leaves the country for whatever period, then a new cruising permit is issued on re-entry.

Yachts coming from Sudan and making overnight stops without going ashore do not normally require a cruising permit.

If planning a Suez Canal Transit and in possession of new SSR documents, read warning here.

River Nile:

A security permit has to be obtained from the Coast Guard as well as permission from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to navigate the river. The permit is difficult to obtain, although the Yacht Club of Egypt in Alexandria may be able to help. Navigation in the channels is restricted to daytime only. There are several bridges and locks, which open at certain times of the day or on request. Taking photographs of bridges, barrages and dams is strictly forbidden. The maximum draft must not exceed 5 ft (1.5 m). Navigation is only possible during winter, from October to May, when the level of water is higher. The river depth falls considerably during the summer months.

Last updated May 2018.



A visa on arrival costs $25.

If a visa is not required, there are no immigration fees due on arrival or departure.

Other Clearance Fees
Including pilotage, port authority fee, stamp duty, quarantine etc.

In most ports this is approximately $40 - $60.

Increased Clearance Fees

The clearance fees in Port Said increased dramatically in May 2018 for foreign flagged yachts transiting south.

New fees:
Yachts 1-18m: $652
Yachts over 18m: $850
Note these fees don't include the Suez Canal transit charge or Agent fees (see comment at bottom of page with example costs).

The clearance fees in Hurghada Port are also now very high. See the Hurghada page for details.

Some marinas - such as Port Ghalib Marina - charge a processing fee for clearance of 80 US$. The equivalent of an Agents Fee.

Cruising Permit

All visiting yachts staying in Egypt for more than the permitted "transit" period of 10 days, must pay a monthly fee.

These cruising permit fees are 30 US$ for yachts less than 18 m and 50 US$ for yachts more than 18 m - per month.

This fee is levied either for just one month or four months, the following four months then the final four months, after a total of 12 months the vessel must leave Egypt.

A form must be signed by the Owner/captain who undertakes that the yacht will leave the country upon the expiry of the temporary clearance period (maximum 12 months) granted by Customs, the period is granted based on the Owner/Captain's request and subject to paying the clearance fees.


It is always better to contact the marina or the shipping agent before arrival in order to confirm the rates and the formalities in case there are any changes.

Fees are payable only once per visit to Egypt at any licensed port of entry. The marina will issue a receipt which should be shown at subsequent ports or marinas so as not to have to pay additional fees for formalities.

This applies to tourist marinas (such as Port Ghalib, Abu Tig Marina, Wadi Dome, Hurghada Marina). It does not apply to Sharm El Sheikh, where you will be liable for further fees.

Overtime is charged after 1400 Saturday to Thursday, all day Friday and public holidays.

Suez Canal Fees

See Transit Inofrmation for the Suez Canal for details of the fees charged.

Last updated:  March 2019

See this useful report January 2018 comparing Fees and Agents Fees for Egypt (covering Felix Agency and Prince of the Red Sea Agency).


Drones are banned in Egypt. If you are found with a drone on board by the Egyptian Intelligence Service, it will probably be taken away and it's unlikely you will see it again.

All military zones are prohibited areas.

Anchorages are permitted around Abu Tig, but the general restrictions are not to land on the islands and to keep a distance of one nautical mile away from them and not to anchor beside corals or military areas, as per the chart.

Outside of the official ports of entry, in other ports and anchorages, one may not go ashore except with special permission from the local authorities. Most anchorages have an army post or military station, who usually ask for the yacht's papers.

Spearfishing, the taking of reef fish, collecting of coral, shells and marine animals, are all forbidden in the Red Sea.

Canal regulations

See Suez Canal Transit details under Port Said.

Yachts must be capable of a consistent speed of 5 knots, which will be checked during the technical inspection. The speed limit in the canal is 9 knots. Yachts normally transit just after the morning convoy.

It is not permitted to sail in either in the canal or the Bitter Lakes.

If a yacht breaks down, you can only be towed by a Canal Authority boat (at a high fee!). However it's wise to contact your agent first who may be able to sort out a cheaper solution.

The Canal transit takes 2 days with a stop-over at Ismalia.

Canal Warning
There have been reports of several yachts being run aground, and one severely damaged, due to the incompetence of the Egyptian pilot. It is therefore strongly recommended that at no time should the pilot be allowed to steer the boat, that the latest charts of the Canal are constantly referred to and that if it appears that the pilot is giving wrong instructions, such as advising the person at the helm to leave the main channel to cut a corner, the captain should use his or her common sense before accepting such advice.

Local Customs

It is necessary to accept that 'Baksheesh' is a way of life in Egypt and cannot be avoided.

The attitude to European women (even when modestly dressed) includes being stared, whistled, hooted and shouted at, and even some groping, and can make them feel very uncomfortable.

Clearance Agents

Take great care when appointing an agent for transiting the Suez Canal. Speak with other cruisers for recommendations and read reports on noonsite. Some shipping agents may offer low prices at the outset, however once they have your papers they may quote an increase in fees due to "changing of the canal dues" or some "tariff" they had overlooked. The yacht's owner is obliged to pay.

Alpha Yacht Services
International Marine Port , South Saina, Sharm el Sheik , Red Sea, Egypt
Tel:+201119919150 / +201001380255
Shipping agency for canal transits and supplies.
Fantasia Shipping
Tel:002-062-3322251 Fax:002-0623 334 301 / 066 333 3510 ,VHF Channel 16
For Hurghada the contact is Ibrahim Slama.
Felix Maritime Agency
Palace Tower 1 , Palastin & Al Salam St, 2nd Floor No 5 , Port Said, Egypt
Tel:+20 66 3333132/3248283 Fax:+20 66 3333510/3249293
Operates from Port Said, Hurghada and Suez. Port Said: Contact is either Naguib Latif (+20-122-119-365), or his younger brother Moxn (, +20-105-128-774 or +20-106-327-799). Hurghada: Contact Ahmed (+20 10 95 30 08 55). Suez: contact Mr Nagib Latif), Suez Yacht Club Tel:+20 66 333 3232/+20 66 324 8283 / mob. 012 211 9365, Fax:+20 66 333 3510
Ibramar Holding S.A.E.
12 Gawhar El Kaaed St , P.O.BOX # 3 Port Tawfik , Suez
Tel:+2 062 319901 (4 Lines) Fax:+2 062 345050
Operates from Suez.
June Shipping Agency
34 El-Geish st. , El-Zahraa building, Flat no.3 , Port Tawfik, Suez, Egypt
Tel:Mob. 002 010 052 914 88 - 002 012 22 39 26 04
One of three agents in Suez Yacht Club working for yachts transiting the Suez Canal.
Madina Group Shipping Agency
Alharamen Building , Chery Street , Hurghada, Red Sea
Tel:0653451709 - hotline :0020100555557 - mobile :0020140000966
Based in Hurghada.
Shipping Agency, Clearance Agent, Yacht Services.
Contact Lotfy Shetawey.
63, Nebi Daniel, Alexandria
Tel:(+203) 487 0050 Fax:(+206) 537 00117
Tours and yachting services. Other Branches in Port Said, Port Ghalib, Cairo & Luxor.
Prince of The Red Sea
40 Gohar El Kayed Street , Port Tewfik, Suez City , Egypt
Tel:Captain Heebi +20 10000 68 412 / +20 12083 42 333 or Ashraf +20 100152 00 05 / +20 111152 00 05 Fax:+20 62 319 09 65 ,VHF Channel 16
Operates from Suez. Continue to offer Noonsite users a 10% discount on the Agency’s fees for a Northbound transit of the Suez Canal.
Seaways Marine Services Egypt
El Gomhoureya St., El Shark District , Port Said
Tel:+2 066 342 2745 / +2 066 341 7468 Fax:+2 066 342 8941
Agent for the Suez canal and all Egyptian Ports. Charts, spare parts, liferaft servicing. Located inside the Post Office Complex, 2nd Floor, Office No. 8.
Shadco Shipping Agency & Marine
Services24 Ahmed Shawky Street, Suez
Tel:002 062 3336909/3323460 / Mob. 002 0122 3157812 Fax:002 062 3326465
Operates from Suez.


Standard International Veterinarian Health Certificate issued by Licenced Veterinarian not more than 14 days of travel showing pet is healthy, free of parasites and has been vaccinated for distemper,hepatitis, leptospirosis, parvirus, canine influenza and rabies (rabies vaccination should be given not less than 30 days before travel and not more than 11 months) You are required to keep pet in your custody for the first three months you are in Egypt.

Sue Richards
Sue Richards says:
Feb 21, 2019 02:07 PM

Message from Captain Heebi (Prince of the Red Sea):
To All Yachts undertaking a Suez Canal Transit:

Attention please:
Don’t be fooled by some shipping agencies that offer low prices in order to get the Yacht’s paper and register it at the Authorities, then surprise the Yacht’s owner with new high prices, claiming of changes in some tariff and canal dues, then the yacht’s owner will be obligated to pay - as the disengagement will be very complicated and a waste of time.

If the yacht’s owner falls into this trap, they are welcome to communicate with us, for not to hire us as their agents, but because we’re able to put those agencies under pressure and solve the problems and to make sure of a trouble-free transiting of the Suez Canal.

We’re doing this because we care about our country’s reputation and the reputation of our profession, especially in the Yacht’s world that we are dealing with since 1963.

Prince of the Red Sea
+ 20 - 62 - 319 13 16

Sandy Wise
Sandy Wise says:
May 29, 2018 04:37 PM

We are just in the process of transiting the Suez Canal and would highly recommend Captain Heebi from The Prince of the Red Sea. He Processed approximately 25 boats this season for the canal. We went with him because we went with his father 30 years ago. We have had no unexpected costs and a total of US $120 for agents fees. We had an alternator problem when we were about an hour up the canal and had to turn back. Captain Heebi immediately helped us get a mechanic at good rates and fixed the problem. We have nothing but praise for the professional way in which he conducts his business. We were asked by a Nasco representative in Port Galib to give them a go as they were trying to begin a business, but were aprehensive about the new guys on the block having enough experience. We were right to go with Prince of the Red Sea as we have heard of terrible overcharging problems with Nasco.

ashraf soukar
ashraf soukar says:
May 16, 2018 11:29 AM

My advice to all Yachts wishing to visit Egypt - make sure that the Word (Pleasure Yacht/ Craft) is written in the Yacht Registration Certificate - I assume this will be one of the future requirements documents for Port Authorities.

Ashraf (Prince of the Red Sea)

Sue Richards
Sue Richards says:
May 13, 2018 07:44 AM

Reported by Agent - Prince of the Red Sea:

Port Said has increased the price for the port clearance from 40$ to 652$ for any sailing yacht transiting south bound. Port Said is the only way to go to the Suez Canal, south bound.

I have one boat now arrive to Port Fouad Marina wishing to transit south, but the port authorities are asking for the new rules 88 2018.
Which is the new fees of 652 $ for port clearance.

The yacht was forced to leave the marina in 30 knots of wind at night because he had no money to pay the 652$. The yacht finally went back to the Mediterranean and changed their plans.

The 652 $ is only for the port clearance. For example, yesterday that boat if he allowed for the transit he have to pay:

Suez Canal dues - 400$
Port Clearance - 652$

Total 1052$ for yacht 13 meter, without the agent fees.

Very bad.

For your info. we have no problems in Suez at all for yachts going north bound, still with the normal fees.

So in Port Said now, the cost for all foreign flag yachts from 1 meter to 18 meter - clearance fees 652$.
If over 18 meter - 850$.

Capt Heebi.

waiotira says:
May 16, 2017 05:31 AM

We planned on doing the Suez Canal passage "ship in transit" to avoid Egyptian larceny. However in Port Suez we were inveigled to visit the pyramids by Mr Abdo, the agent for Felix Shipping. For several hundred dollars he had no trouble getting us 30 day visas the next day. This is his little racket for passing yachts. Other yachts have paid much more for this service. Make sure you have authentic looking original Ships Registration Certificate, or you will be delayed. Facilities are rough and expensive at Port Said and Ismailia. Do not expect a Tonnage Certificate or a calculation for the charges, as they are not forth-coming. Our visit to the pyramids was a hurried affair where you are pressed for further tips. The Museum of Antiquities in Cairo was impressive, but the pyramids were disappointing. Cheaper fuel and better, more amenable facilities can be found in Aqaba, Jordan. Visiting Petra was more interesting than the pyramids, without any stress or pressures. Visiting Egypt from Jordan without taking your vessel is also more secure, cheaper and stress free.

Sue Richards
Sue Richards says:
Jul 04, 2016 09:58 AM

Firstly, El Alamein is not a port of entry, so you would need to clear in at Alexandria first (using an Agent). When clearing in, you would need to ask for permission to visit El Alamein (sailing permit). On arrival there, you will be stopped by the Egyptian Navy who will check your documents.

From asking a few contacts in Egypt about this marina, it appears it is more of a villa leisure complex than a marina for transient boats. Answers like: “Yacht visitors may use the marina facilities and may not. I am not sure what they mean by that, I can't get clear answers”. Quite probably, the larger and flashier your yacht, the higher the chance of getting in.

If, by chance, you do manage to obtain a berth, you would need to return to Alexandria afterwards to clear out of Egypt, or to get clearance for the next Egyptian port you wish to visit.

ASmith says:
Jun 27, 2016 10:43 AM

What about sailing from Greece to Porto Marina-El Alamein? It looks fairy touristic.... the only issue is the depth of the port? Any experience?

Sue Richards
Sue Richards says:
Jun 06, 2016 01:40 PM

Posted on behalf of Fritze, SY Alytes:
Contrary to the information on noonsite (and on the entire net) - it IS still possible to enter Egypt with a visa on arrival. The restraints employed in May 2015 were quickly removed after a storm of complaints. According to the Egyptian embassy in the UK, the visa on arrival policy is valid "until further notice". We can confirm that through first hand experience. It is tied to the availability of a stable, internet based e-visa system. There is currently no date given for when such a system will be "live" and usable. Consequently, there is no need to apply and wait for visas in Djibouti.
Alternatively, you can also cross the Suez Canal as a boat in transit without checking into Egypt at all. This would save you some money (visa, clearance and the like). You can't leave the ports, though.

David S Wheatley
David S Wheatley says:
Mar 17, 2015 07:31 PM

Egypt decided Tuesday that foreigners wishing to enter the country need to obtain a visa before departure, and will not be issued at the airport upon arrival, state-run Ahram online website reported Tuesday.

Best regards David [S/Y "Surabaya Girl" - Portsmouth UK]

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