The offices of Telecom Egypt are in Karnak Temple Street in the centre of town. This is where queries are made and bills are paid. The telecom office on the west bank is in Qurna village at the back of the market place near the hospital. The amount payable for any period can easily be checked on line simply by inputting the telephone number (and dialling code 095 for Luxor) into the link below. Line rental is paid three months in advance and calls are paid for three months in arrears but this is not for the previous three months leading up to the bill, it is for the three months prior to that..
Dialling for Directory Enquiries is 140
and there is an on-line Telephone Directory can be found on http://www.140online.com/ but it is in Arabic and so can be difficult to follow.
The telephone company does not send out bills and you have to make the effort to pay what you owe or your line will be disconnected. Bills are payable of the 1st January, 1st April, 1st July and 1st October each year. Charges for Dial-Up Computer Services are quoted separately on the bill. The cost of a telephone call on a land line is 1 le per hour and the cost of a dial-up Internet connection is 1.25 le per hour. This is very inexpensive but it can add up to a considerable sum if you are a regular or heavy user of the Internet. There are several different numbers that can be used for this service. (095) 7772004 and 777777 are probably the most popular and both are very very slow.
DSL computer lines can run through the local lines and can be arranged through various Internet Providers in Luxor such as Rainbow Net, TeData and Link - the lines are not arranged directly with Telecom Egypt. DSL lines are slow compared with other countries but fast mobile connections can be found. There is a nationally negotiated charge of 95 le per month for a 256 line.
Call boxes are on most street corners and they are run by Minatel and Ringo. Cards can be bought from various outlets but the main place to buy telephone cards seems to be pharmacies. Egyptian Telephone Company cards can usually be bought from the same outlets.
The main mobile companies in operation are Mobinil, Vodaphone and Etisalat and there appears to be more mobile phone shops than any other kind of shops in Luxor. At one time there was a brisk trade in mobile phones which were brought out from the UK but this trade has now died out as generally mobile phones are now cheaper in Luxor than they are in the UK and most models can be obtained locally or ordered from Cairo.
Mobile phone rates depend on the agreement entered with the provider and you may be asked to produce your passport when you take out an agreement. Pay as You Go rates are still time dependent in Egypt and both the fee paid and the line will be lost unless it is renewed within the grace period allowed after the card date has expired. Cards are available from 25 le to 100 le. There is an extra charge on Mobinil cards but Vodaphone credits you with the full amount that you pay.