Egypt cuts cost of tourist visas and museum fees

Egypt is reducing the cost of tourist visas in June, July and August to promote post-Covid-19 travel to the country.

Arrivals to Luxor and Aswan airports in the north of the country will pay US$15, $10 less than the usual $25, for the three months.

Egypt’s Ministry of Tourism & Antiquities has also halved entry fees to all archaeological sites and museums, which have been closed since March 23, as a further incentive and waived rent fees for all bazaars and cafes based there.

Hotels in Egypt resumed operations on May 18, 2020, with new hygiene standard regulations. They will be limited to operate at 25% capacity for the remainder of May, and capacity will be capped at 50% from June 1.

All properties have undergone mandatory sterilisation before reopening and must pass an audit to ensure they are meeting new hygiene criteria, which includes providing staff and guests with masks, gloves and personal protective equipment (PPE), contactless check-in with disposable pens, temperature checks for guests, sterilising luggage and providing hand sanitiser.

Valets have been banned and casinos have also been limited to 50% capacity.

The Central Bank of Egypt, meanwhile, has launched an EGP50 billion (£2.58 billion) financing initiative to support tourism in the country, and dropped the interest rate at which it is repaid from 8% to 5%.

The UK government currently advises against all but essential travel to Egypt and strongly advises all UK citizens in the country to return home.

The UK Foreign Office updated its advisory to say Air Cairo is operating flights from Cairo to Paris and Cairo to Frankfurt on Tuesday, May 26 – but noted that options for onward travel to the UK “might be limited”.

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