Russian tourists delighted with return to Egyptian resorts

Special Russian tourists delighted with return to Egyptian resorts
Russian tourists arrive at Sharm El-Sheikh airport, after a decision to lift an almost six-year ban on direct flights following the bombing of an airliner, which killed everyone on board in 2015, Aug. 9, 2021. (Reuters)
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Updated 12 August 2021

Russian tourists delighted with return to Egyptian resorts

Russian tourists delighted with return to Egyptian resorts
  • Russia resumed flights to the Egyptian Red Sea resorts, ending a ban that had lasted almost six years following the bombing of a Russian airliner
  • The flight into Sharm El-Sheikh was welcomed with a ceremonial water salute upon touchdown and Russian tourists were presented with flowers

CAIRO: The first Russian tourists to return to Sharm El-Sheikh for six years said they were delighted to return and were impressed by Egyptian hospitality.

Russia resumed flights to Egyptian Red Sea resorts on Monday, ending a ban that had lasted almost six years following the bombing of a Russian airliner that killed all 224 people on board. An EgyptAir plane flew 300 Russian tourists to Hurghada on Monday.

Tuesday’s flight in Sharm El-Sheikh was welcomed with a ceremonial water salute upon its touchdown and the Russian tourists were presented flowers and balloons.

The tourists were seen smiling and eager to finally get the chance to revisit some of their favorite Egyptian resorts.

 

One tourist told Arab News that this was her sixth trip to Egypt, expressing her joy over the return of Russian tourism to the country.

She said she loves Hurghada as a vacation spot because “the people in Hurghada are so great and so is the hotel.”

She expressed her desire to spend her next vacation in Hurghada as well.

Another tourist, who was visiting Hurghada with his wife and child, said he loved the destination and that his “trip was postponed for six years.”

 

He added that a trip to Hurghada is unique and cannot be compared to his holidays in other locations.

Rossiya Airlines has scheduled regular flights from the Red Sea resorts to Moscow.

According to an official statement, EgyptAir is set to operate seven weekly flights from Moscow to Hurghada and Sharm El-Sheikh.

Prior to the first Russian flight landing in Egypt, a Russian delegation inspected both Hurghada and Sharm El-Sheikh airports to ensure sufficient security and health measures.

The 2015 bombing caused a dip in Egypt’s tourism earnings, which made up roughly 12 percent of Egypt’s gross domestic product in 2019.

 

The Egyptian branch of Daesh said it downed the plane over Sinai in October 2015 shortly after the aircraft took off from Sharm El-Sheikh. 

At the time, Russian officials insisted that security procedures at Egyptian airports were insufficient.

Prior to the 2015 bombing, Egypt used to receive on average 2.5 million Russian tourists annually.

The Egyptian government said the resumption of tourism flights between the two countries is a reflection of their strong relations.