Connie Tindale


There are a lot of motor boats working on the Nile, offering a fast, cheap and method for crossing the river. The boats operate 24 hours per day and charge visitors 1 LE per journey if they are entering a boat that is full of other people or 5 LE if they boat is entirely for their own use. This is for a journey that goes directly across the river from one side to the other. For journeys that are further up or down river, the cost will of course be increased. For a journey to or from the Sheraton, expect to pay 10 LE.

If you want to hire a boat for the afternoon to take you up and down the river simply to relax and watch the world go by, you can expect to pay around 20 LE per hour. Of course, some boat captains will try to charge you ten times this and sometimes they are successful, but if you, know what the going rate is then you have the grounds on which to bargain. Nobody is ever 'robbed' or 'ripped off', the price is what you agree to. If you agree to a very high price then the onus is on you and not on the boat captain to agree on what is a reasonable price..

The boats are limited in the number of passengers that they can take and in where they can go. For instance, if the River Police see a boat that they consider has been dangerously overloaded with people, then they will stop it. Likewise, if a boat is seen beyond the region that the River Police operate then they will order it to turn back. It is not possible to travel to other towns in one of these motor boats.

Recently, however, fuel costs have been rising continuously and people have to make a living so expect a considerable price rise to compensate for the increased costs.