Currency & Saving Money Hacks in the Middle East

Planning a trip to the Middle East? Awesome choice! You need to know some saving money hacks to make the most of your trip. So, stay tuned!

We know how captivating this region is, and to ensure your journey’s a breeze, we’ve got some tips ready for you!

Before you dive into this adventure-packed region, let’s talk about something super important: money. Yes, we’re here to give you saving money hacks, so you can handle your cash confidently and enjoy all the cool stuff the Middle East has in store.

Saving Money Hacks While Exploring the Middle East

Firstly, familiarize yourself with the local currency before departure. Understanding exchange rates and exchanging a bit of cash beforehand will streamline your spending during your stay. Secondly, consider the right mix of cash and card usage. While cards are convenient in cities, having local currency for smaller places or markets proves handy. ATM withdrawals along the way can keep your pockets prepared.

Otherwise, you need to know additional saving money hacks to avoid being ripped off. As an Egyptian, I will give you insider tips for other Middle Eastern countries when moving around Egypt.

  • Download Different Ride Hailing Apps

Before you leave your country, download different apps to request a ride wherever you are. You can find Uber, Careem, inDrive, Didi, and others in Egypt. Sometimes, the prices for rides are becoming exorbitant. Other times, you might find it difficult to book a ride because of rush hours. That’s why you need to have multiple options and choose the best for you.

  • Try Street Food and Shop at Local Grocery 

You do not need to go to hyper supermarkets to bring your groceries. For example, in Egypt, you can find many local veggies and fruit vendors wherever you go! That will help you explore any city within budget. 

Download Simsem and find your local guide in Jordan, Egypt, Turkey, and Lebanon. You will get a tour unlike any before without hassle or getting ripped off.

Find Your Local Guide

Egypt is a tourist spot, brimming with historical sites and lively activities, and that again applies to other Middle Eastern countries such as JordanTurkey, and Lebanon. That means you will find many tour companies and operators, and here is one of the most essential saving money hacks in the Middle East: forget about these vendors and providers. You rarely find the level of quality you’re looking for. Instead, you will find out that travel is actually expensive, especially if you come here with your family.

The best way is to find local guides in Egypt, Turkey, Jordan, or Lebanon and get authentic experiences. Not just for cutting costs, it will give you a new perspective of these countries. 

Cultural Spending Etiquette and Safety

Understanding local payment customs, including tipping, is key to a seamless spending experience. In the Middle East, tipping practices vary across regions. While some establishments might include a service charge in the bill, it’s often appreciated to offer an additional 10-15% for exceptional service. When in doubt, a polite inquiry or observation of locals can offer valuable insights into regional norms.

Tipping isn’t solely confined to restaurants. In many scenarios, such as taxi rides, hotel staff assistance, or tour guides, a small token of appreciation is customary and warmly received. It’s essential to approach tipping as an expression of gratitude for exceptional service and not as an obligation.

Mastering the art of bargaining in local markets can also enhance your cultural experience. Engaging respectfully in negotiations adds an element of enjoyment to your purchase and fosters a connection with local vendors. Approach bargaining with a friendly demeanor and a willingness to engage in the process—it’s often considered a form of social interaction rather than just a transaction.

Equally paramount is safeguarding your funds. Rely on reputable places for currency exchange and consider utilizing travel-friendly credit cards to avoid additional fees. Notifying your bank about your travel plans ensures a seamless financial journey.

As you gear up for your adventure in the Middle East, armed with insights on local money, spending etiquette, and safety, anticipate an enriching journey where every purchase embodies a thrilling cultural exchange. Happy travels!

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