Old Mar 12, 18, 2:51 am
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Advice for 1 week in Algieria--help me refine my rough trip idea

We had a mini-discussion about things to see in Algeria towards the end of this thread: Algeria visa invitation

I've refined my trip sketch from what was mentioned in that thread to eliminate the Bechar/Taghit portion due to logistical complexity (we'll aim to spend time in the Sahara on a future trip to Morocco, where the infrastructure is a little better).

As a result, we now have time to add a highly-regarded stop in Constantine.

Here's the rough sketch so far:

Traveling in a group of four people:

3/25: Arrive ALG @ 1p, depart for CZL @ 6p, arrive CZL @ 7p
3/26-27: Constantine and surrounds
3/28: CZL-ORA midday
3/28-3/29: Oran (one in our group has a friend who lives there, hence prioritizing Oran as a stop)
3/30: Depart ORA @ 9a, arrive ALG @10a
3/30-31: Algiers (and surrounds, if anything of interest is close enough?)

So, questions:

1) Am I grossly unbalanced on the above itinerary? Should I cut a day off somewhere and put it elsewhere?
2) Am I missing any OMG-must-see things in the country (that I'd have time for if I cut something in the above itinerary out)?
3) Any particular suggestions for these three places as far as logistics and safety? (Is walking around the tourist attractions safe? Are taxis (or Ubers or whatever) reasonably available and safe? As a very experienced traveler with 75 countries under my belt, do I really need guides as many TripAdvisor threads suggest? Is self-driving with a rental car a safe and good option? Etc.)
4) I've seen reference that there's a "parallel" money exchange market (a la Argentina). Is this safe and reliable? (If so, I may skip out on prepaying on Hotels.com and instead pay cash upon check-in.) Are ATMs that accept US-issued cards reasonably available? (I've seen mixed info on TripAdvisor about this, and also notes that foreign-issued credit cards may not be widely accepted, even at hotels.)
5) Anything about prepaid data SIM cards I should be aware of that isn't covered at Algeria | Prepaid Data SIM Card Wiki | FANDOM powered by Wikia
6) Anything else major I should be aware of?

Thanks in advance!
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