Sunday,23 September, 2018
Current issue | Issue 1231, (29 January - 4 February 2015)
Sunday,23 September, 2018
Issue 1231, (29 January - 4 February 2015)

Ahram Weekly

‘Egypt in Our Hearts’

Many Egyptian families have taken this week off to travel to warm tourist destinations like Luxor, Aswan, Sharm El-Sheikh and Hurghada, reports Ahmed Kotb. The families are taking advantage of a two-week, mid-year school break that runs to 7 February.

Al-Ahram Weekly

What has encouraged families this year is an initiative launched by the Ministry of Tourism last month to revive domestic tourism. Titled “Egypt in Our Hearts,” the initiative provides discounted prices on flights inside Egypt, as well as tour packages and Nile cruises. Prices for a three-day stay, with accommodation, starts at LE839 per person.

According to a recent report by the Aswan Tourism Chamber, occupancy rates in Aswan hotels have increased since the beginning of January to reach about 40 per cent, which is an improvement from the same time last year, when occupancy rates fell below 30 per cent.

In the Suez town of Al-Ain Sokhna, some 120 km east of Cairo, hotels occupancy rates currently stand at about 85 per cent, according to Al-Ain Al Sokhna Hotel Personnel Association.

In the Red Sea resorts of Sharm El-Sheikh and Hurghada, occupancy rates are much lower, falling to 40 per cent early this week mainly because of the economic crisis in Russia. Its citizens represent 60 per cent of all tourists arriving to Egypt, according to Ezzat Abdel-Ghaffar, regional internal audit manager at Travco Group.

Abdel-Ghaffar added that hotels and the tourism sector, especially in the Red Sea, depend mainly on international tourists, and that local tourism represents no more than 10 per cent of all tourism revenues at its peak seasons.

“It is always good to witness a boost to domestic tourism,” he said.

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