Egyptian Cabinet Announces Resumption of Flights and Tourist Activities From 1 July

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Sharm El Sheikh airport will be allowed to open from 1 July (Photo: Authentic Travel/Shutterstock)

The Egyptian government has announced that flights and tourist activities will resume in the governorates with the least amount of Covid-19 cases from 1 July.

The least infected governorates include South Sinai, which covers Sharm El Sheikh and Dahab, and the Red Sea governorate, which includes the mainland resorts of Hurghada, Marsa Alam, El Gouna and Sahl Hasheesh, among others. The governorate of Marsa Matrouh, which contains popular tourist resorts located on the Mediterranean coast to the west of Alexandria is also included in the declaration.

Egypt suspended international flights on 19 March after the Covid-19 outbreak was declared a pandemic, a suspension which was extended in May until at least 15 June. Since then, Egypt has begun a phased return to domestic tourism, allowing a limited number of hotels to operate at initially 25 per cent, then 50 per cent capacity if they met stringent health and safety requirements following government inspections.

To date, 155 hotels around the country have met the new hygiene certification standards, which require the presence of an on-site physician and area of the hotel dedicated for quarantine, as well as thorough cleaning and disinfection of the establishment.

The Egyptian cabinet also announced that incoming tourists on charter flights will be exempt from visa fees until the end of October, traditionally the end of high season. In a further attempt to encourage a return to international tourists, the civil aviation ministry has granted a 50 per cent discount on landing and parking fees for charter planes arriving in the tourist resorts.

To date, Egypt has recorded a total of 38,284 Covid-19 cases since mid-February, with a total of 1,342 recorded deaths. 


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