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Cairo



What is the typical dress code at work and in public places? Is formal dress ever required?

Work dress code is Western business attire. In public, locals and foreigners wear a lot of Western clothing. Women will want to dress modestly. Local women do not show shoulders or knees or cleavage. Most foreigners find it most comfortable to wear long, maxi length skirts and dresses or pants or capris. Women do not wear shorts. I don't wear sleeveless clothing and I find linen clothing very comfortable in the hot months--loose and long!

Winter gets chilly and I wear jeans and sweaters with perhaps a light jacket. Going out at night for nightlife or fancy dinners you can wear sleeveless and more Western style formal or dressy wear, though I wouldn't wear mini skirts.

Men do not wear shorts locally and doing so makes you stand out. The exception being places like Maadi House (the American club) and similar places where it is all Westerners. There can be some very fancy occasions so a couple pieces of formalwear is good. - Jan 3, 2018


The dress code in the embassy is business formal. People tend to dress conservatively in public. Most women will be wear long sleeves and pants year round, men don't typically wear shorts. Foreign women are not expected to cover their heads, in fact, not all Egyptian women are covered, but wearing anything revealing can potentially draw unwanted attention. Many women in the embassy community were cat called, hissed at (a local way of cat calling), touched, groped, etc. - Sep 9, 2017
Dress code is somewhere between business casual and business day-to-day. Bigger meetings are more formal - suit and tie. - May 25, 2017
Nothing too revealing but generally Egypt is pretty relaxed--for foreigners especially. - May 16, 2017
A bit dressier than in the US. - Jan 30, 2016
Women need to cover legs, shoulders, and upper arms to avoid some of the harassment. They get harassed regardless of what they are wearing, but conservative clothes will help minimize the harassment. - Jan 29, 2016
Modest. Women mush have arms and legs covered. - Jan 29, 2016
People dress up here a little more out on the streets than in the U.S. I am comfortable wearing short sleeves outside, but not shorts unless I am at the beach. At work, it is mostly business dress, though you do see some jeans with dressy tops. - Oct 8, 2014
Business casual for women and suits/tie for men. Modesty everywhere is a must. retty much no shorts - but no morality police like in KSA. Lots of hisses and cat calling if you reveal too much. - Aug 19, 2014
Business casual, women need to dress very modestly, out of cultural consideration and to avoid unwanted attention. - Aug 19, 2014
You can get away with smart casual. Offices are air conditioned. Suits at intervals expected. In public - modesty - the key thing I didn't realize was that the solution for women (since you cannot wear shorts on the street) is ... capris! not short, and not suffocating long. A good casual option. No spaghetti straps, etc. Or even tank tops. You can wear with a scarf or over-shirt, maybe. - May 28, 2014
Business formal at work, despite the heat. - Apr 2, 2014
Very modest. - Mar 27, 2014
Business at work -- and cover at least knee to elbow in public. - Jul 23, 2013
Business at work. In public, shorts are out (unless you are in a tourist area or maybe Maadi) -- women need long sleeves. - Jul 17, 2013
Pretty much over the top. - Jun 16, 2013
Women are advised to cover their arms and knees. At work, it is similar to the U.S. - suits for men and business attire for women. Jeans are also acceptable, depending upon your responsibility. - Jun 7, 2013
Conservative. Men can wear shorts, but women should refrain from wearing tank tops and showing cleavage. - May 22, 2013
Business. - May 12, 2013
In public, women have to dress conservatively: no shorts, no tank tops, covered arms (at least short sleeves). - May 12, 2013
The dress code at works depends on individual offices and supervisors, but the basic accepted dress code throughout Egypt is "not revealing." It is best to avoid short skirts, shorts, sleeveless tops, tank tops, etc. - Feb 1, 2013
Business at work. Men can get away with shorts in the neighborhoods that are heavily populated by expats. As a woman, I wouldn't expose much skin anywhere. It's just asking for trouble. As I said, sexual assault has gone up sharply, and while the way a woman dresses is no excuse for attacking her, it's good judgment not to draw any more attention to yourself than you have to. Some non-Muslim Egyptian women have taken to covering themselves to avoid harassment, and there have been stories about women having their hair cut forcibly by Islamic fundamentalists for not covering it up. - Feb 14, 2013
Business everyday... - Mar 31, 2013
Shirt and tie in the office, jacket at meetings. We don't get out much these days; our time in public is limited. - Mar 26, 2013
Dress tends to be a bit more formal. Just don't show much skin in public and you'll be okay. - Feb 13, 2013
Egyptians are pretentious and fairly formal. - Jan 18, 2013
Covered shoulders and knees are the norm. In Maadi you can wear a skirt that skims your knees and a wide-strapped tank without too many cat calls or gropes! At work, I'd say business casual. - Nov 27, 2012
Women should dress more conservatively (i.e. cover your knees, shoulders, and cleavage).Men in shorts is not generally acceptable, although many expat men do wear them. - Sep 20, 2011
Dress modestly in public. This is an Arab country. I am occasionally embarrassed by what Americans and Australians think of as proper dress to go out in public. It gets hot here, so suits are fairly rare most of the year. - Aug 4, 2011
Suits for office workers. Slightly less formal in summer just because it's so hot. - Jul 19, 2011
Formal dress at work. Conservative all the time. Egypt is not super conservative. Shorts by a Westerner is acceptable. Females should be especially careful. Not for offending them but more being harassed. - Jun 5, 2011
All I can say is that it's hot here and you really want to wear shorts. However, this is a Muslim country, and I find it disrespectful when women wear short shorts or sleevless shirts. People try to do it here in Maadi because so many expats live here. But be prepared for unwanted vulgar attention from the locals. Bring your capris. Streets are very dirty, so if you wear sandals your feet will get dirty. - Jun 26, 2010
Business attire at work, casual in public. - Dec 2, 2009