Egypt: detention of seafarers for carrying prohibited items

Port news

Published: 15 May 2023

Credit to: Gorodenkoff /

Recently, seafarers have been detained and prosecuted by Egyptian security authorities with the risk of being faced with a fine or potential jail sentence, as well as missing the ships they are signing on to or their flights back home.

The following items should not be carried in seafarers' luggage while crossing the Egyptian border:

  • Drones
  • Wireless sets like walkie-talkies
  • Live and toy arms, ammunition, explosives or any other substances containing explosive materials including firecrackers
  • Pyrotechnics
  • Drugs that cannot be dispensed without a prescription
  • Any electronic device that is unusual and which it is difficult to understand the nature of and which may raise police suspicion

Luggage inspection may also take place at the Suez Canal area gates for crew embarkation or disembarkation of transiting ships, i.e., such inspection could occur even if any of the items have passed through Egyptian airport security without any problem.

We are grateful to correspondent El Hamamsy Marine Services Ltd. for their assistance in their contribution to this update.