Moving to Egypt comes with a lot of reward, a whole lot of outstanding history to be in the midst of, but, also a lot of unknowns. As with taking the big leap to move abroad to any country in Africa, there is lots to prepare for in terms of culture, pace of life and even language. Black expats are choosing to relocate to Egypt more than ever, but what are the answers to some of those daunting questions and doubts about the process? In this article, we talk through the top questions asked when moving to Egypt.

1. Which are the top locations for Black expats moving to Egypt?

Cairo Egypt
Credit: Alex Azabache. Cairo, Egypt.

Egypt certainly has a lot of  interesting and enriching options but the most popular options for expats by far are:





New Cairo

Garden City

Nasr City and Heliopolis are also options for people less interested in Expat-dense areas.

2. Should I learn Arabic before moving to Egypt?

Credit: Ono Kosuki

Yes, is the simple answer. But be encouraged that most expats found themselves improving massively while in the country. There are tons of ways of learning too. Many took Arabic classes, others chose online options and platforms such as italki while others chose to befriend local Egyptians and practice on the streets. Note that you’re best to learn Egyptian Arabic in specific as this is the main version of Arabic spoken in the country.

3. Is Egypt a good location for teaching English abroad?

Credit: Yan Krukov

Teaching English online is a perfect profession for digital nomads and long-term travelers. Egypt has a demand for English-speaking teachers but also is a country easy enough to navigate if you’re looking to teach purely online.

If you have a TEFL certification and (preferably) a 4 year degree, you’ll be able to find work as a TEFL teacher in most locations in Egypt.

4. How do you find apartments while living in Egypt?

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Many expats use Facebook groups to find long-term accommodation in Egypt. By far the most popular response was looking in the local area. Knowing the area you want to be based in and asking around seemed to be the best bet for most.

If working or studying in Egypt, it is highly suggested that you find accommodation close by because traffic in Egypt is serious.

Other helpful websites include OLX and Aqarmap which offer furnished and unfurnished housing options. Be prepared to pay 1-2 months rent in advance.

5. How do you get residency in Egypt?

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Questions about citizenship in Egypt were plentiful. To gain citizenship in Egypt, without having to renew any visas or permits, you must live in the country for 10 consecutive years and be at least 21 years old. You must also have no criminal record, be proficient in Arabic and prove that you are mentally and physically healthy.

There are other, less permanent options including Student visas, Temporary Residence visas and Work visas/permits.

6. Is Egypt an expensive country to live in?

Beach with parasols and blooming bougainvillea near Sharm el-Sheikh,Red Sea,Egypt.

By far the most expensive aspect of living in Egypt will be renting/accommodation. For a two bedroom accommodation in an expensive part of Cairo, you can expect to pay $800 USD upwards.

Otherwise, the cost of living in Egypt is relatively low. According to cost of living comparison site Numbeo, the price for a three-course meal for two in a mid-range restaurant will cost just over $16 USD. A 1kg bag of rice will cost 64 cents.

It is always wise to take into consideration your lifestyle, comforts and things you may need to feel at ease while transitioning into a new country – in which case, checking out the lifestyles of other expats in Egypt and their activities may be useful to gauge a monthly budget.

7. What are healthcare systems like in the country?

Healthcare in Egypt has massively improved in recent years. While public healthcare is an option, most expats prefer to opt for private healthcare when needed.

The best hospitals and healthcare systems can be found in Cairo and are quite plentiful. This is largely because the city is Egypt’s primary hub of medical treatment. Most healthcare professionals speak English fluently in these facilities. Since the social security system in Egypt does not extend to expats, it is recommended to obtain full coverage from your insurance company or even negotiate an expat package with your employer which includes health insurance.

8. Is Egypt a family-friendly location for expat families?

Egypt is absolutely a family-friendly option for expat families. With many Black expat families finding the culture and lifestyle suitable for family living, the options are vast.

In terms of schooling, there is an abundance of international schools across Egypt that will be on offer for children in need of schools. The fees may be slightly high (depending on location and institution) but the quality is considered to be excellent. Overall, Egypt is said to be a perfect location for family adventures and offers a relaxed pace of life. With a country full of history, there is something to explore together every weekend.

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