Egypt Discussion Forum

Discussions regarding holidays in Egypt.

Between my wife and I, we always have a virtual chemists shop of prescribed medicines with us when we travel. Just to be safe, we always carry the original boxes with the prescription details on them, but we have never been questioned in Egypt, or come to that, any other country we have visited.

Thanks Roger and Briar,

I thought that would be the case but just wanted to check

Cheers Doreen
Just got back from Egypt and traveled with my mother, who is a walking chemist. We weren't questioned about the medication at either airport.
never been questioned when travellingand you can buy most things over the counter in egypt. All pharmacists train in english... so just go inside and they will help.
I bought my asthma inhalers for about £2 sterling... compared to £6.60 on prescription at home. Pharmacists give you the best stuff for insect bites and upset tummies... you don't need to pay a doctor £50 sterling.
I agree with you about pharmacists, Perfume, they seem to be very knowledgeable and helpful all over the world, not just in Egypt. It always amazes me that they seem to be able to communicate so well in several different languages!
I have never had to buy medecines before abroad,but it is reassuring to know that they are available if anything was to go a miss :shock:

I take 2 prescribed medecines for High blood pressure,if I were to lose any on route ,can you buy them there ,or do you have to see a doctor?
Like you , Doreen, I take medication for blood pressure. It never ceases to amaze me what drugs you can just buy over the counter in many countries! Personally though, when something could, in the extreme, mean a difference between life or death, I would always attempt to contact a qualified doctor before purchasing, or taking, any replacement treatment, even if it appears to have the right name on the box!
I "think" you should be able to buy anything.... as Egypt does not have a national Health system.... doctors still give out a prescription, but its just a letter with dosage on.... people still pay.

If it is a prescribed item that is not easily available, I would play safe and go through my 24 hr medical insurance anyway.....
What's the situation with bringing medication in to Egypt please. I have tried the foreign office tourist guide site to no avail.

I take lots of different prescribed medication including mental health medication, including sleeping tablets and dizaepam and other muscle relaxants/ pain killers - everything is prescribed.

I am like a walking chemist but am concerned about bringing these types of meds to a foreign country.

I need to be able to bring enough to cover any relapse and to self manage, so I will need more than my standard 2 week maintenance dose just in case I do relapse (fingers crossed I wont ).

I am also concerned about loss or theft and replacing them if I can only bring the basic maintenance supply, would I be able to go to a doctor and get them replaced?

My illnesses are not covered by my insurance and with the correct meds I am able to stabilise myself through self management but am concerned about the amount I need to bring to cover all eventualities.

I am going to Sharm before Cairo, so if anyone knows the situation about bringing meds into the country, I would be grateful for your advice.

I understand some meds are available without prescription, does this apply to painkillers and the 'mind altering' (lol) medication I need, or is it just like here in the UK, flu remedies, paracetamol, low dose codeine etc

I have to pay a lot for my meds and this facility could save me money.


*merged to existing topic Briar
perfume ,move to wales we have had free prescriptions for everyone since apr 07 :lol: :lol: :lol:
I have back problems for which I have been prescribed diclofenac and diazepam in the UK. I was able to obtain both from the pharmacy in Hurghada without any problems.

I think you can obtain most things over the counter in Egypt but wouldn't recommend anyone buy anything that hasn't already been prescribed for them at home.
Thanks guys, much appreciated.

Technically pharmacies in Egypt should not issue "mind altering" drugs such as Diazepam, anti-depressents or drugs for conditions such as epilepsy etc without a doctors cert. More or less anything else is available over the counter however and at considerably less than the £6.65 paid over here in the vast majority of cases.

We travel back and forwards from Egypt several time a year and it's one of the only countries in the world I don't bother to take my sizeable first aid kit with me - in fact it's usually the reverse and I wonder if I could get stopped for "drug-running" back to the UK as I'm always carrying something back for the family or friends
Thanks Tah-M, thats one thing I am really worried about, having all my 'drugs' on me, some of them would be very nasty for some people, and I dont want to look like some kind of drug runner either but at the same time I need to ensure I have enough for every eventuality, or be able to get a prescription there.

When you say 'technically', I assume you mean if you go to some places they dont really care about technicalities or prescriptions. I understand that, its the same for a lot of issues, however I also would need to know what I was taking is what I am meant to take, not some horse manure dried out, ground down and shaped into tablets or something lol

I think I shall just take a full stock and my most recent consultants reports to show I am given these meds in this country, if I took something that wasn't what it said on the tin, I could get quite poorly. I guess that drug runners don't happen to get boxes with their names printed on their wares, so that should help lol
When you say 'technically', I assume you mean if you go to some places they dont really care about technicalities or prescriptions.

Quite correct :shock:

Basically I would advise anyone travelling ANYWHERE in the world that is dependent on prescription medication to carry preferably a prescription, or at the least their prescribed medication IN THE ORIGINAL PACKAGING. These items should be carried in handbaggage to help prevent problems in the event of lost baggage - although obviously in the light of heightened security, this may need to be reconsidered for liquid medications and sharps .

I have purchased medication over the counter in Egypt without a problem at a considerable saving to even my pre-paid prescription costs in the UK and pharmacists there seem clued up on both generic and brand names. ALWAYS cross-check dose and strength with what you regularly take. (In Egypt even things like Stugeron , the travel sickness tablets, are sold at almost three times the strength to those you'll find in Boots!) The meds should have the original leaflet in the box (usually in Arabic and English as a minimum) so check it is there and that you are able to understand exactly what they are selling you. That safeguard in place, you should have no problem and I am now confident enough to be purchasing supplies there to bring back with me rather than just using Egyptian pharmacies as a source of emergency supply.
Thank you once again.

Yes I will take a copy of my repeat sheet, take all I need with me and keep everything in the boxes (oh well there goes my hand baggage allowance lol). And worse comes to worse any authorities can ring my doctors and see that I am not a drug runner lol

I think that's best rather than try and get what I need there if I need more than my maintenance dose for relapses. I don't need liquids or sharps, so that will be ok too. But its nice to know that I can also stock up and double check things. I don't think I will get my 'mind altering' meds tho, just the others so I can save money without hassle.

You have been very helpful, many thanks for that, I do appreciate it.
Well thanks for the advice guys it was spot on, I took quite a bit with me in my boxes and really had no need to buy more for when I was there but out of interest I went to a pharmacy in Cairo and could have got all I wanted (including the valium, sleepers etc), I did show them my prescription sheet, dunno if that made a difference hence 'no questions asked', I bought some 'spare' valium cos it was dirt cheap, scary really but there you go.

My kids get tonsillitis a lot so bought some of the antibiotics to have in the cupboard.

The pharmacist was telling me the prices per packet of various meds and my goodness we are being stuffed on some of our prescription meds, well stuffed.
Hi! So I'm having the same problem, I suffer from anxiety and I was reading that benzodiazepines are banned in Egypt. So in this case you think if i have my prescription from my country i will be able to buy in any pharmacy in Egypt?
Thank you
Never rely on advice from the Travl Agent or Tour Operator. Advice on the internet can be just as bad

If it is a banned medication then no – You would need to take enough with you but before you do.
You need to prove your medicine is prescribed to you if:
  • it contains a ‘controlled drug’
  • you have it on you when you’re entering or leaving the UK
You mayalso need to get a licence.You couldget a fine or go to prison if you travel with medicine that’s illegal in
another country - check with the embassy of the country you’re going to before youtravel.
More Legal and Correctinformation can be found here here.
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