After the UK’s decision to add Egypt to its red list, the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) raised an alarm as Egypt’s red status poses a serious threat to its tourism and travel industry. The WTTC research warns that the Egyptian tourism and travel industry may deal with daily losses amounting to more than EGP 31 million if it remains on the red list.
The British governmental decision to place Egypt on its red status came after studying the critical condition of the COVID-19 pandemic in the country. According to the Central Agency for Public Mobilization and Statistics (CAPMAS), the British tourists make up the largest number of tourists traveling to Egypt after Russian tourists.
The UK is now discouraging its citizens from visiting Egypt as the red list restriction imposes a mandatory and self-paid 10-day hotel quarantine upon arrival back in the UK, in addition to the costly PCR tests. According to recent reports, a citizen in the UK is expected to pay £2,285 (approximately EGP 50, 000) per person for self-isolation in specialized hotels within the UK.
In a report shared with Egyptian Streets, WTTC stated that the Egyptian tourism industry could suffer a hefty loss that exceeds EGP 237 million each week. The research urged the Egyptian government to “act now” and speed up the vaccination rollout if it is keen on recovering its tourism industry.
Petition to the UK government
A petition has started online on petition.parliament.uk, urging the British government to remove Egypt immediately from the red list for travel. The petition raisers doubted the UK decision and claimed that it failed to explain why Egypt was added to the red list to begin with, when, compared to some countries on the amber list, Egypt had and continues to have more favorable COVID-19 indicators.