Egypt welcomes 300,000 tourists since July despite pandemic

Published on : Wednesday, October 14, 2020

According to Mohamed Kaoud, President of the Tourism and Aviation Committee at the Egyptian Junior Business Association (EJB), Egypt has witnessed a record rise in tourist arrivals, numbering to about 300,000 tourists since July.

Kaoud, who is also CEO of Egyliere Travel, said the country’s daily tourism rate until the end of August stood at about 6,000, but dropped 60 per cent to 2,400 once Egypt made the PCR test compulsory for travellers.

These numbers started increasing again to over 3,000 tourists a daywith Egypt also witnessing a 26 per cent rise in domestic tourism during the summer of 2020.

Searches for domestic flights also rose, by 53 per cent, as more Egyptians looked to travel within the country given the difficulties of international travel due to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

Kaoud said that tourism is a critical sector for Egypt’s economy, given the strategic and economic importance of both outbound and inbound travel and the serious situation that businesses face due to the pandemic.

He also said that tourism constituted 10 per cent of the average total income of the world’s economies prior to the pandemic. The sector represented 18 per cent of Spain’s income, 16 per cent of France’s income, 11.9 per cent of Egypt’s income, and 3.5 per cent of Saudi Arabia’s income.

At a recent global webinar on the tourism industry, experts emphasised the importance of domestic tourism, and that it provides a natural choice for many travellers who might find international travel difficult.

Kaoud said that the travel industry is in desperate need of an urgent and further tailored support package to enable its survival.

‘Working in collaboration with our partner organisations gives us all a combined voice which the government can consider and act upon,’ he said. ‘We are strategically thinking of saving the future of the travel industry, and achieving sustainable tourism and hospitality growth that will save jobs and businesses, and add further opportunities for recruitment that runs alongside Egypt’s Vision 2030.’

The UN’s World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) reported that 53 per cent of destinations worldwide have now started easing travel restrictions introduced in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

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