Travellers warned to heed Egypt travel advice

Travellers warned to heed Egypt travel advice

Abta is closely monitoring the crisis in Egypt following the army ousting president Mohammed Morsi and continuing deadly violence across the country.

Operators and agents face the prospect of disruption in the wake of revised Foreign & Commonwealth Office advice on Tuesday warning against all but essential travel to the country except for Red Sea resorts.

This prompted Discover Egypt – a leading provider of Nile cruises – to cancel holidays departing until tomorrow (July 5).

Holidays due to leave on or after July 6 have not been cancelled at this stage. Clients due to travel after Saturday are being advised to check the company’s website for updated information.

Thomson and First Choice cancelled all outbound flights to Luxor yesterday while Thomson Cruises is amending its Egyptian itineraries to include stops in Crete and Haifa in Israel instead of Alexandria and Port Said.

The Tui Travel operators said that the majority of customers are in Sharm El Sheikh, which has not been affected by the demonstrations.

Abta said: “Holidaymakers currently in, or travelling to in the next few days, areas that the FCO advises against travel to, such as Cairo and Luxor, are advised to contact their travel company.

“Holidaymakers to the Red Sea Resorts, such as Sharm El Sheikh and Hurghada, are not affected by the change of advice and will be able to continue their holidays as planned; the resorts are operating as usual.

“We are monitoring the situation closely and would encourage all travellers to Egypt to follow the FCO travel advice or any advice issued by their travel provider and local authorities.”

The removal of Morsi, in what was described by his Muslinm Brotherhood supports as a military coup, prompted a call from US president Barack Obama for a swift return to civilian rule.

At least 10 people were reported to have been killed in the coastal cities of Alexandria and Marsa Matrouh, as well as in the southern city of Minya. Shots were also fired by machine gun at a pro-Morsi rally in Cairo.

Foreign secretary William Hague said: “The situation is clearly dangerous and we call on all sides to show restraint and avoid violence.

“We continue to advise British citizens to avoid all non-essential travel to Egypt apart from the Red Sea resorts, and to monitor travel advice from the Foreign Office.

“The UK does not support military intervention as a way to resolve disputes in a democratic system. The chance of a democratic future was hard won for Egypt by the Egyptian people two and a half years ago.

“But looking forward, we call on all parties to show the leadership and vision needed to restore and renew Egypt’s democratic transition.

"It is vital for them to respond to the strong desire of the Egyptian people for faster economic and political progress for their country.”

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