In our latest Destination Focus, we look at one of the favourite holiday spots for Russian tourists – Egypt.
The suspension of charter flights between the two countries looks to be on the verge of ending, and Egypt’s tourism authorities are not going to miss this opportunity to grab their market share back.
Speaking at the Egypt stand at the MITT exhibition, Dr Mostafa Khalil, Member and Treasurer of the Borad of the Egyptian Tourism Federation, and Tourism Counselor of Egypt in Russia Ahmed Elgendy talk about what they are doing to keep Egypt fresh in the minds of Russians.
With the resumption of flights imminent, what are your plans to regain your market share?
Egypt has a strong market share already – Russians are missing Egypt. We are updating our destination, making sure all our resorts are ready to welcome Russians as soon as the flights are resumed. That is why we are here – to inform all our Russian guests that Egypt is ready to welcome you at any time. We are training our staff to serve Russians according to their traditions. All our hotels are renovating rooms, and the Egyptian government has allocated 5 billion Egyptian pounds (259 million euros) to help hotels carry out renovations. We are doing all this while we wait for our Russian guests – not tourists, guests. We have a very good cultural connection between Russians and Egyptians.
Is the enthusiasm of Russian tourists towards Egypt still there?
Certainly. Everyone is coming and telling us they want to come to Egypt, asking us when the flights will resume. We hope the matter will be resolved very soon.
Apart from the core products you offer, are you developing any niche tourism offerings?
Definitely. We can offer five-star tourism as we have many of the hotel chains – Fairmont, Four Seasons, Starwood, etc. We are also directing our efforts towards other sectors – MICE, spa and wellness, sports, and so on. MITT offers a chance for us to meet operators in this sector.
Which sub-sector is growing the fastest?
MICE and business events. We have good infrastructure for it in Egypt, and we can offer an ideal combination of business and pleasure. This is a very strong attraction for business meeting organisers.
What role does MITT play in your marketing?
MITT plays a vital role in our marketing plan – we are planning to take a larger stand following resumption of flights, with more participation from our colleagues in Egypt. We are planning a large space, designed in an attractive way, to catch the interest of our partners in Russia. Please be ready!