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Egypt tourism officials look to attract high end travellers

  • 27-Dec-10 19:19
  • Egypt
  • Financial Times

The Egyptian government is seeking new ways to encourage travellers to book Egypt holidays after a turbulent year with the recovery of the global recession and a recent series of shark attacks in which one tourist lost her life.

Egypt tourism officials look to attract high end travellers

Just as things are looking up for Egypt with visitor numbers increasing despite the economic global crisis, the country has suffered another blow after a series of rare shark attacks earlier this month left one tourist dead and four others injured during their Sharm el Sheikh holidays.

The Egyptian government are seeking new ways to encourage travellers to once again book their Egypt holidays and reassure them that the attacks were rare and the area is safe to visit.

In the past Egypt has suffered from terrorist attacks on tourists enjoying Egypt holidays but the tourism sector has quickly recovered each time.

The government are now looking for new ways to strengthen the holiday industry and are targeting high end travellers which make up 21 percent of the country's foreign currency revenues.

Known for its pyramids, historic sites and sun and sea packages, Egypt is a popular destination for travellers all over the world and emerging destinations in the region are helping to increase visitor arrivals to the country.

To help entice high end travellers to book holidays at luxury Egypt hotels, the tourism ministry has launched a "product diversification" strategy which will help establish the country as a destination for golfing, snorkelling and spa holidays.

To help this along, the Dreamland golf course which surrounds the Alexandria highway leading out of Cairo has been renovated and is now a registered academy which was awarded the European Challenge Tour status earlier this year. The golf course saw 8,000 visitors three years ago and 25,000 visitors are expected to visit the complex in 2011.

Amr El Ezabi, chairman of the Egypt Tourist Authority, said: "First, you create a destination, then you create a brand," explains "Golf and wellness upgrade the image of Egypt."

Chief economist with EFG-Hermes bank, Monica Malik, said: "The Egyptians have a range of tourism attractions and a wide range of prices compared with the situation a couple of years ago. The crucial thing is to improve diversity."

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