Though fixed phone lines seem increasingly extraneous as the years go by, they are sometimes the only way of reaching certain Egyptian land lines. Furthermore, the intense competition from mobile operators has forced TE to launch aggressive promotional efforts to boost its fixed-line subscriptions. Though these come and go, you are pretty much guaranteed to benefit from some promotional offer (usually with regards to your per-minute tariffs) whenever you sign up for a fixed phone line.
You can obtain an application for a fixed phone line through the Telecom Egypt (TE) website – in order to complete this you will need to submit a copy of your identification.
For Egyptian nationals an identification card will suffice, as a foreigner you may be able to get by with an ID card from your home country, but a passport is a safer bet. When filling in the address on the application form, make sure you use the address given on an official document you receive regularly (such as a utility bill). Once you have submitted your application, TE will contact you to arrange the installation of your phone line. Therefore, it is prudent to obtain a mobile phone (LINK) before you sign up for a fixed line.
Telecom Egypt also offers phone handsets if you don’t want to go to the trouble of buying one yourself.
Prior to the 2008 financial crisis, the Egyptian government was considering accepting bids for a second fixed-line operating license. These plans were put on hold in late 2008, but will likely move forward at some point in the not-too distant future.