Egypt’s had more comebacks than an ageing rock star, but in 2015 there are sure signs the destination is bouncing back with longevity in mind as the government demonstrates commitment to long-term economic and political stability.
Recently announced aid and investment packages that will see money pumped into tourism-related infrastructure and resorts have vindicated renewed market confidence in a destination that’s always been a favourite getaway with the Brits.
General tourism numbers to Egypt surged 70% during the second half of 2014 and this upward trend has continued in 2015.
Hotel operators across the board, from top-end players such as Abercrombie & Kent, to Egypt specialists including Red Sea Holidays, are all reporting a strong resurgence in business. Nile cruises are back on the agenda and so too are winter sun holidays to the ever-popular Red Sea resorts.
With the pound relatively strong against a number of currencies and Egyptian hotel operators offering low rates to pull in the punters, there’s never been a better time to sell Egypt.
Tour operators are offering value for money packages, unmatched by most other destinations, plus the guarantee of year-round sunshine, quality resorts, and Egypt’s timeless cultural highlights are all draw cards.
In a recent interview with TDUK, Red Sea Holidays deputy managing director Jason Hilton revealed the specialist’s ongoing confidence in Egypt where the company recent purchased another property, the Palace Port Ghalib Resort in Marsa Alam – a Red Sea location that has been earmarked for development by public and private investors.
Hilton said UK tourism to Egypt was currently up 10% year on year and was continuing to grow.
This was being supported by more airlift to the Red Sea with the Marsa Alam route from Gatwick proving very popular. While the FCO has never advised against travel to the Red Sea, the removal of travel advisories elsewhere was having a strong impact, he said, with scheduled and chartered flights to Luxor and Cairo now resumed.
Hilton reiterated that investment pledged to Egypt was being ploughed into tourism infrastructure, while hoteliers were improving existing properties with refurbishments and renovations.
“And security in the country is tight and visible – which is provides added peace of mind”, he stressed.
There’s plenty of trade support for agents keen to sell Egypt, with fams aplenty – Red Sea Holidays is hosting 80 agents this year.
The Egyptian Tourist Office has also been proactive, signaling its commitment to the UK tourism industry.
Of course, there are no guarantees that Egypt will remain stable in a region where terrorism and political tension are on-going concerns, but the destination is taking its tourism business seriously and taking all the right steps to safeguard its future.