Fierce competition for moderate volumes of incoming and local tourists has led to the fact that hotels in the Egyptian resort of Hurghada are rapidly dropping prices. Discounts reach 50%, and we are talking about the most prestigious resorts and hotels operating according to the all-inclusive system, which is popular among Russian tourists. This is especially relevant against the background of information that has appeared about the possible imminent full-fledged opening of Egypt for Russian tourists — an inspection of the Federal Air Transport Agency arrives in Hurghada, and the country of the Pyramids has been scheduled for a personal visit by Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Thus, according to the Egyptian newspaper Egypt Independent, prices for reservations in several hotels in Hurghada fell to a minimum price of 600 Egyptian pounds per night per room (about $ 38). We are talking about four-star hotels, where previously the price was 1600 Egyptian pounds or $ 102. But even the most prestigious five-star hotels in Hurghada have reduced prices from 3,000 to 1,600 Egyptian pounds — or from $ 191 to $ 102, respectively.
The publication separately notes that we are talking about hotels in the most popular and prestigious neighborhoods of Hurghada, such as Soma Bay, Makadi Bay, Sahl Hasheesh and El Gouna. The reasons are the same — the level of booking is falling due to low demand from local residents and a decrease in foreign tourism.
At the same time, a representative of one of the host companies, Mahmoud Arafa, commented that the number of foreign tourists arriving in Hurghada is still small due to the suspension of flights from major markets such as Germany, Great Britain and Russia. There are not enough tourists even if hotels operate at 50% occupancy, set by the Cabinet of Ministers as part of the protocols to combat coronavirus.
It should be noted that «encouraging signals» were finally sounded regarding Russian tourists: on Sunday it became known that an aviation security inspection from the Federal Air Transport Agency was preparing to arrive at the Hurghada International Airport, which would begin another round of security checks at the airport of Egypt’s main Red Sea resort. This arrival, which experts have been expecting since November of the last year, may mean preparations for the opening of Hurghada for direct charters from Russia (for details, see the link).
In addition, Russian President Vladimir Putin is scheduled to visit Egypt in 2021. Naturally, if this is facilitated by the epidemiological situation. Russian Ambassador to Egypt Georgy Borisenko spoke about this in an interview with the MENA news agency. He noted that in 2021, in the presence of a favorable sanitary and epidemiological situation, official visits to Egypt by President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin and Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation Sergei Lavrov are expected. In this context, it should be assumed that by the time of Putin’s arrival or following the results of his visit, Egypt will finally be fully open for Russian tourists — the Russian authorities will allow direct charters from Russian cities to Hurghada, Sharm El Sheikh, Marsa Alam and other resorts of Krasnoye seas.
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