UK tour operators continue to run holidays to Egypt as normal
Confusion among tour operators in Europe mirrors the confusion over the ongoing turmoil in Egypt. TTG Digital reports today that UK tour operators are continuing to run holidays to Egypt as their European counterparts are cancelling trips.
Thomas Cook, Tui Travel and Kuoni are all following the UK Foreign Office’s advice, which recommends against all but essential travel to most of the country – except for the Red Sea resorts.
The UK has also removed advice from local police recommending that tourists in Hurghada remain in the grounds of their hotels.
Yet the German sister companies of both Thomas Cook and Tui have cancelled all trips to the country following advice from the German foreign ministry.
A Tui Travel spokesperson said, “The safety of our customers is always our number-one priority and we continue to work with the [UK Foreign Office] and closely monitor the situation in Egypt. The majority of our customers are in Sharm el Sheikh which is a considerable distance – indeed, an eight-hour drive – from Cairo.”
A spokesperson for Thomas Cook said, “Further to the advice of the [UK] Foreign & Commonwealth Office, Thomas Cook continues to operate its flying and holiday program to Red Sea destinations, and normal booking conditions apply. The Red Sea tourist area including Sharm el Sheikh and Hurghada remain unaffected and are operating as normal.”
Kuoni says it has cancelled all excursions in the Red Sea area for the next 30 days due to “the current situation” and transfers to and from the airport are unavailable. It has also changed its terms and conditions for bookings travelling to the country within the next 21 days, but holidays to the red Sea area are unaffected by this.
Travel agents say that they are monitoring the situation hourly and add that the mood remains unpredictable. One tells TTG Digital that “the overriding message to tourists today is stay poolside, within hotel confines, keeping mobile phones on.”