well, I am happy to say that I have entered and exited Egypt with a non-Egyptian carnet...at no extra cost.
My carnet did not list Egypt as "Not valid" - where the stamp is on each page. I compared before hand with other overlanders and the only difference on my carnet was the back of the last page where a bunch of countries were striked through. Egypt was crossed in the back of the carnet but not on the front of the actual import/export pages. The carnet must have passed through 10 different Egyptian guys but no one mentionned anything.
What may have helped a lot too is we came from Sudan and the custom agent in Aswan seriously needs some glasses. He had to look about 2 inch away to see anything.
more details can be found on our website:
on the other hand, it cost us about $500 to get in and $300 to get out.
Ferry from Wadi Halfa was $200, plus $100US for custom in Egypt, $100US for insurance and a bunch of small fees left and right.
Ferry from Nuweiba to Aqaba is $220 for the car plus $80 per passenger!!!!
I hope I don't have to drive through Egypt anytime soon....