How many hours/ days will I be expected to teach?
Hours of work are flexible. One of our volunteers teaches from 11:00 to 12:00 three times a week, another teaches for several hours every day. You can agree your commitments before you arrive to suit both yours and the students' needs.
Is there a minimum time I need to commit to the school?
You can volunteer for as long or short as you wish. It is however preferable that you spend a reasonable amount of time as consistency is important.
Do I need any teaching qualifications and/ or experience?
No qualifications or experience required. A positive attitude, a love of children and the willingness to live and work in a different culture is all you will need.
What do I have to teach? Is there a set curriculum I have to follow?
There is no set curriculum for the English classes. You will mostly be doing the alphabet, numbers, colours and vocabulary with some of the more advanced children learning to read. It is all about being creative with the classes as the kids are eager to learn!
What resources will I have available?
There are various art materials, children’s books, a whiteboard and flashcards with the numbers and alphabet.
What do I need to bring with me for the school?
Any art materials are greatly appreciated as well as any new books. Ones with big letters and lots of colour are best as the children are not advanced yet.
Do I need to speak Arabic?
Speaking some Arabic would be a major plus point, but we do not expect that you will arrive speaking Arabic fluently. You will pick up the language pretty quickly as the students have little or no English.
Is there somewhere I can learn Arabic while in Dahab?
Yes, almost everyone is happy and willing to help you learn the basics. For those wishing to learn more, ask anyone local and you're bound to find a teacher.
Is there a dress code? (men & women)
Dress code is modest for both men and women - long pants (past the knee) and shirts with sleeves. While teaching avoid wearing any clothing that is overly tight or revealing.
Do I need a visa?
That will depend on your passport. Most Western countries can get a 1 month visa on arrival. The process for extending visas for these countries is also relatively simple - you can apply for a visa extension of up to six months twice without having to leave the country by visiting the visa office in Sharm el Sheikh.
The visa costs around 35 Euros and taxis to and from the office are about 20 Euros or less. There are several Facebook groups you can contact to arrange to arrange a taxi share that can significantly reduce the cost (see the Contact FAQ above for the group links).
Please do check specific visa rules for your nationality on your country’s travel advice website as some countries have very different rules/requirements, especially certain places in Eastern Europe.
Who do I contact if I have a problem while I’m in Dahab?
First of all, please check our Useful Contacts page for a list of phone numbers for essential people to know about. Dahab is such a tiny community, basically anyone is willing to help out. A very good resource for information, advice and other questions you may have are the Facebook groups Dahab News & Talk, Residents of Dahab and Women 4 Dahab. Your contact for anything not covered above is Aliya Nour.
What are the arrangements for finding somewhere to live while I’m volunteering?
Unfortunately volunteering at the project does not come with free accommodation. Finding a place to live is not difficult however as there are places available to suit any budget. Please see our Useful Contacts page.
What type of accommodation is available?
There is a wide variety of accommodation available, it depends what you are looking for. An average 2 bedroom apartment will cost you around 175-200 Euro per month, and house shares are also possible. Beach front property can be quite a bit more expensive, as can larger or particularly high spec houses.
Camp-style hotels cost around 5 Euro per night and can be a great option for when you first arrive to give you time to search and find a place that is right for you.
Please see our Useful Contacts page.
How much money should I bring with me for living expenses?
That largely depends on you and your lifestyle. If you were to cook at home and only rarely eat out at restaurants then you can get by on a budget of as little as 100 Euro a month. This does suppose that the accommodation you have chosen has kitchen facilities available. However if you prefer to eat out frequently or go to the bars on a regular basis then it is more than possible to spend a lot more. You can live a reasonably lavish lifestyle here with a budget of 500 Euro per month.
What happens if I get sick?
There is an excellent medical facility in Dahab, plus various pharmacies for less serious complaints.
Please see our Useful Contacts page for doctors and emergency services.
What are the shops like in Dahab?
There are many shops along the promenade selling a wide variety of touristic kitsch, but if you search hard enough some beautiful hand-crafted treasures can be found.
Fruit and vegetables are plentiful, delicious and very cheap. General grocery shops have all of the staples but do not necessarily have a large variety of brands. Some goods (especially things produced abroad) may be impossible or expensive to acquire. There is also a community market on Fridays with a wide variety of goods for sale.
How do people get around? Are there buses?
Dahab is not a large place so you can easily get around on foot or by bicycle. Taxis are plentiful and very cheap – most journeys cost only 10 EGP. It can be helpful to make sure you agree the price beforehand.
Please see our Useful Contacts page for a list of recommended taxi drivers.
What is there to do in Dahab for fun?
Dahab is very laid back, so don’t expect massive parties. There are lots of nice cafes with music on the beach and a couple of bars too. During the day there is swimming, snorkling, free diving, scuba diving, trekking and mountain climbing. There are also several trips available from Dahab to places like Petra and the Pyramids or day trips into the mountains and surrounding desert.
What is the weather like?
The weather in Dahab is fantastic, with year round sunshine. In winter months temperatures rarely drop into the single digits at night with the average temperature around 18°C, while in summer the days can be quite hot with the average temperature in July around 33°C.
What vaccinations do I need to get before travel?
There are no mandatory vaccinations for Egypt, but the National Travel Health Network and Centre recommends travellers should get Diptheria, Tetanus and Hepatatus A. Check with your doctor for more personalised recommendations.
Will I be able to use my mobile phone in Egypt?
Mobile phones are commonly used and at very cheap rates, however roaming charges for foreign mobile numbers can be quite high. It is recommended that to avoid these charges you purchase an Egyptian SIM. These are widely available and relatively cheap. On purchase you will be required to present a passport to verify your identity.
How far is the airport from Dahab?
Dahab is about 80km from Sharm El Sheikh international airport. Transfers cost between 300-400 EGP if pre-arranged. Most accommodation you book can arrange a driver to meet you at the airport on request. For those wishing to make their own arrangements there are a number of taxi numbers listed under the Useful Contacts section.
Is alcohol allowed in Dahab?
Alcohol is legal in Dahab with off licences, bars and even some restaurants all licensed to serve. Some establishments without a licence may allow you to bring in your own alcohol, but some owners may not be happy with this. To avoid issues it is always best to check.
How easy is it to withdraw money? Will I need to bring cash?
There are many cash machines around Dahab that you can both withdraw money from and change up foreign currency. Be aware that over particularly busy holidays the machines can run out of money, so it is wise to always keep a small reserve at these times. Most hotels and some shops and larger restaurants will accept card payments. Cash can be exchanged at the bank, hotels and exchange bureau.
What sort of travel adapter will I need for my appliances?
The standard plug socket is the same as the European standard 2-pin and the voltage is 220v.
What are the rules on tipping?
There are no hard and fast rules on tipping. It is not an obligation, but should be used as a sign of recognition of a job well done. Do bear in mind that wages for service industry staff are often extremely low, so tips can be an important additional part of an employee’s income.
Are there western style toilets in Egypt?
Yes, in all of the tourist areas you might go there are western style toilets. In some of the more remote areas you may find more basic facilities, but they are not a common occurrence. The only thing to bear in mind is that the sewerage system is not designed for large amounts of toilet paper – this should be placed into the bins you will find in all facilities.
Can I drink the water in Egypt?
The tap water is not safe to drink, and can be quite salty. The locals do drink ‘sweet water’ they gather from the oasis but for travellers bottled water is recommended and widely available.
What is the time zone in Egypt?
Egypt is normally 2 hours ahead of UK time (GMT+2) but during the summer months this is reduced to just one hour difference as they do not change their clocks for summertime.
Will I be able to access the internet while in Dahab?
Free wifi is widely available in most cafes, restaurants and hotels. This can be somewhat slow at times. You can also put data packages onto an Egyptian SIM for a much faster connection if needed. We highly recommend that you purchase an unlocked MiFi and bring it with you.