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There are no traditional alcoholic beverages in Egypt, not counting beer, which is known to have been invented in Egypt. However, modern beer has nothing in common with ancient Egyptian, and therefore it can only be called a local drink with a stretch. In addition, given that Egypt is a Muslim country, alcohol is under special control here, but not banned. Alcoholic beverages are produced in the country, and you can buy them here both locally and foreign. However, the cost of foreign drinks will be more expensive than at home.
What kind of alcohol is there in Egypt?
The most popular drink is beer. Among the famous Egyptian brands are Stella, Luxor, Sakara. Wine is made from local raw materials. Dry and semi-dry wines are considered the best: red Omar Khayyam, white Cru des Ptolmees, pink Rubis Egypt, as well as the Grand Marquis and Obelisk wine lines. Strong alcohol is represented by whiskey, vodka, rum, gin, arak. Whiskey Auld Stag and Devlin, premium vodka Blue40 and Black50, aniseed vodka Zibiba, rum Cubana Rum and tequila Malvado are considered good. They can only be bought.
If you will be relaxing in an all-inclusive hotel, then you can order Stella beer, vodka, gin, rum, arak of local brands Bolanachi or Pharaoh's for free at the hotel bar. At the same time, the products of both brands of strong alcohol, admittedly, are not of the highest quality and have little resemblance to the real taste of the drink. The choice of free alcohol in hotels, although large, is sometimes not enough for true "lovers" of special occasions, for a large company or a romantic meeting. After all, free alcohol is poured only into cups, sometimes into disposable plastic ones, and the free bottling time is limited from 10:00 to 22:00 hours. Everything that stands separately on the shelves of hotel bars is already for an additional fee. There is alcohol and world brands, but it is not available for free sale.
Where to buy alcohol in Egypt?
There is no great need to buy alcohol from most vacationers, it is enough that they are served free of charge in hotels. But if you want to try something else, or your vacation is not all inclusive, then you can buy it in Egypt, but you will have to hunt for it. It is not sold in regular stores and supermarkets, but only in specialized ones, which there are not very many in resorts, and in non-resort cities there may not be at all.
There is a chain of stores under the general name Drinkies (website drinkies.net), which sell local "fuel". You can find the store closest to you by going to the website. The prices here are reasonable, there are no special features with the purchase. For example, a bottle of Stella beer with a volume of 0.5 liters. – from 25 pounds (approximately rubles), wine 0,75 l. – from 150 pounds (approximately rubles), whiskey 0.75 l. – from 200 pounds (approximately rubles), vodka 1 liter. – from 350 pounds (approximately rubles). Payment is made in any currency, but it is more profitable to pay in Egyptian pounds.
If you want alcohol of well-known world brands, then you need to go to Duty-Free stores for it, which are in large shopping malls in tourist areas, or stock up in advance at the airport. For example, in Sharm el-Sheikh, there are such shops in SOHO Square and La Strada shopping centers. In Hurghada - in the Senzo Mall shopping center, there are shops on the Sheraton. But there are restrictions on the time of purchase – no later than 48 hours from the time of arrival and in quantity - no more than 3 liters per person. To do this, you will need to present a passport, where you must stamp the purchase. According to some reviews, the purchase is possible later, but this is how lucky. Prices are overpriced, the choice is huge, from cheap to elite. It is better to pay in European currency (dollars, euros), and accept Egyptian pounds, but at an unfavorable rate. For example, whiskey – from $ 19; tequila, rum – from $ 20; vodka from $ 12.
Attention! In February 2023, the media reported that the rules for the sale of alcohol in Egyptian duty-free had changed. Now you can buy not one liter of strong alcohol per person, but two. However, you can spend up to $200 on all goods (including cigarettes, perfumes, etc.), and a customs tax of 1% of the cost or at least $13 per liter has been introduced for alcohol. As a result, it turns out that now the Egyptian Duty Free is not duty-free, but very expensive. Therefore, if you can't imagine a vacation without a bottle of high-quality foreign alcohol, it's better to buy it at the departure airport at home.
Alcohol can be found on the menu of some restaurants and cafes, but not everywhere. These are mainly beer (from 65 pounds) and wine (from 250 pounds per bottle).
By the way, it should be noted that the sale of alcoholic beverages has been allowed in the country since the age of 21 and it does not matter whether to a local or a tourist. The population is loyal to tourists, although Islam does not welcome alcohol. However, do not forget about the limits of decency on vacation. During religious holidays, there is a ban on the sale of alcoholic beverages.