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Monday, January 11, 2016

British tourists should return to Egypt – staying away is what terrorists want | Comment | Voices | The Independent


http://www.independent.co.uk/voices/comment/british-tourists-should-return-to-egypt-staying-away-is-what-terrorists-want-a6787771.html

British tourists should return to Egypt – staying away is what terrorists want

A few hundred canny travellers will wake up on New Year's Day in the luxury Steigenberger Nile Palace in Luxor

"More than 900,000 British nationals visit Egypt every year," says the current Foreign Office travel advice. "Most visits are trouble-free." 

The second part is true. The first, sadly, isn't.

And the large shortfall is not just comprised of holidaymakers who would love to visit Sharm el-Sheikh but can't, following the apparent bombing of a Russian jet in October; it also includes many people who will mistakenly conclude that all of Egypt is off-limits.

Yet this is an excellent time to visit most of the nation's tourist areas. A few hundred canny travellers will wake up on New Year's Day in the luxury Steigenberger Nile Palace in Luxor. They are enjoying winter sunshine at absurd prices: under £400, including flights, for a week's package holiday in one of the great hubs of antiquity.

Safe? As with France, the Foreign Office deems Egypt to have a high threat of terrorism.

But British tourists should certainly go: partly because they will be able to reach deep into the history of civilisation; partly because it's a fabulous time to get bargains; and partly because if we comply with the terrorists' aims and hand them a victory in their campaign to eradicate tourism, we make ourselves more vulnerable.