The Schengen region's countries have lifted their Egyptian travel bans along with Russia in the last month as Egyptian Tourism is set to take center stage in 2017 once again. Analysts agree that Egypt's tourism is already picking up as Russian tourists -- making up the majority of Egypt's foreign tourist population -- are set to return to the country.
Daily News Egypt -- citing Web It Mag's report -- said Russian flights to Egypt would resume on February 23. Russia makes up almost half of Egypt's foreign tourism population, reaching a maximum of 67.9 percent against other nationalities in 2015. Due to a suspected terrorist-related plane crash that killed 224 tourists in October 2015, Russia had issued an Egyptian travel ban into the country.
Further improving opportunities for Egyptian tourism, Schengen's Denmark, Sweden, Norway and Finland have announced the lifting of travel restrictions. The four countries had declared a ban against Egyptian travel in the same year of the passenger jet crash. The four countries may contribute less than Russia, UK or Germany, but they are crucial as the Schengen region could influence other countries to follow suit the lifting of Egyptian travel bans.
According to Egyptian Independent, citing Federation of Egyptian Chambers of Commerce Tourism Chamber Member Mohamed al-Hassanein, the Schengen region's ban lift would encourage other European countries. According to Thomas Cook, a British Travel Company, Egyptian holiday outlook is positive as civil disobedience activities and political strife had declined steadily in the last two years.
In 2016, Egypt's tourism industry performed poorly, contributing immensely to the deterioration of its tourism economy assets such as lackluster heritage site management. During the Year, Egyptian Archaeologist and Former Antiquities Minister Zahi Hawass said the country's heritage sites lacked manpower as there is not enough tourists to fund the management due to travel economy failure.