Unlikely country swarmed by tourists despite Israel war raging just miles away

Two unlikely countries tourism industries have been branded ‘bomb proof’ as they have been inundated with visitors, despite the war between Israel and Hamas raging just miles away.

Egypt – as well as Turkey – have both seen a massive increase in the number of plane seats available to visitors travelling from Europe and North America – even surpassing the ever popular Canary Islands.

Between now and March 2024, flight seats to Egyptian Red Sea destinations and to the seaside resort region of Antalya, the Ottoman tourist mecca, have increased by a whopping 43 percent compared to the same period in the 2022-2023 season.

The supply of seats to the Canary Islands from the main tourist source markets is also up year-on-year, although by a much smaller amount – by only 4 percent.

Although flights to the Canaries are still incredibly popular, notable growth has still been recorded to Egypt and Turkey ahead of the winter season.

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A report by Mabrian Technologies,a firm specialising in big data and tourism intelligence, looked at the four major destinations or ‘holiday macro-regions’ that lead theworld’s tourism business during winter – from November 1 to March 31.

Of these four ‘macro-regions’ – the Caribbean, Turkey and Egypt, Asia-Pacific and the Canary Islands – the Canary Islands had the smallest increase in the supply of airline seats.

The Caribbean has increased by 15.1 percent, the Canary Islands just 4.2 percent, Asia-Pacific 16 percent and Turkey-Egypt a whopping 43 percent.

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The reason for the rise in supply for the Eastern Mediterranean is that potential tourists – depending on what happens in Gaza – have regained the sense of security after the terrorist acts of previous years.

On the other hand there is the improvement of the destination and with the state of the surrounding region, it has also had an impact on the prices.

The report read: “The more competitive prices of their accommodation are making operators favour them this season, and these destinations have also improved their infrastructure and with it their image.”

Popular resorts in Egypt include Cairo, from the culture, Giza for the pyramids and Sharm El-Shekih for a scuba diving holiday.

Since the outbreak of war the FCDO changed its travel advice for Egypt, and while Cairo and Hurghada, Luxor and Sharm-El-Sheikh remain in the ‘safe to travel to’ zone, all but essential travel and no travel is recommended to the northern Sinai regions.

Turkey has no new travel advice in relation to the outbreak of war between Israel and Gaza, but all but essential travel is advised against withint 10km of the border with Syria, the city of Sirnak and Hakkari province due to historic issues.

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