Last Update 14:16
Tuesday, 15 October 2019

Germany resumes direct flights to Sharm El-Sheikh: Ministry

Germany's transport ministry decided to overturn a ban on joint transportation of passengers and luggage from Sharm El-Sheikh to Germany

Ayat Al Tawy , Wednesday 11 May 2016
Tourists swim in the sea in the Red Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheikh, November 7, 2015 (Reuters)
Views: 9150
Views: 9150

Germany has decided to "immediately" ease restrictions on air flights between its airports and the Egyptian Red Sea resort of Sharm El-Sheikh, the Egyptian foreign ministry and German embassy confirmed.

The move will see the resumption of direct air trips between the popular beach town and the European country, according to both sides.

A number of European airlines and governments introduced restrictions on flights to Sharm El-Sheikh over security concerns after a Russian passenger jet crashed in Sinai in October 2015, killing 224 people, most of whom were holidaymakers. 

German airlines were among many foreign carriers who banned check-in luggage on flights from the city's airport, and direct flights from German airports subsequently stopped.

But the ban, in place since November 2015, has been overturned.

"Based on appropriate security measures on the part of the Egyptian safety and security aviation authorities, luggage will be immediately re-allowed to be carried when travelling from Sharm El-Sheikh airport to Germany," read a Wednesday statement by the German embassy in Cairo sent to Ahram Online by email.

The embassy said that special security technology will be implemented and trained personnel will be assigned for baggage handling at the passenger terminal at Sharm El-Sheikh airport in a bid to "minimise to the lowest possible level security risks of baggage delivery and transfer."

The Egyptian foreign ministry said Wednesday the decision to lift the ban on joint transportation of check-in luggage was issued by the German transport ministry.

Germany's aviation authority has officially notified all tour operators of the ban removal which will see flights resume normally to the Red Sea resort, the ministry added in a statement.

The foreign ministry said talks between the governments of two countries to alleviate the constraints lasted for six months.

Egypt’s ambassador in Berlin Badr Abdel Atty said the decision came following a recommendation by German air travel inspectors who conducted security examination at airports in Sharm El-Sheikh and other Red Sea towns in March.

He said the decision mirrors Egypt's "compliance to international airport security standards."

He added that the move also "highlights that Germany is keen to push forward cooperation on airport security and open the door to the recovery of the tourism sector in Sharm El-Sheikh and Egyptian tourism generally."

Around 170,000 German tourists visited Egypt in the first quarter of 2016, mainly frequenting the popular Red Sea beach resorts of Sharm and Hurghada. 

Egyptian tourism, a pillar of the economy and a key source of hard currency, has taken a blow since the plane crash, with Sharm El-Sheikh believed to be suffering the most.

The Egyptian affiliate of the Islamic State militant group claimed responsibility for the October crash, saying it had smuggled a bomb on board.

Following the crash, the British government halted direct flights between Sharm El-Sheikh Airport, from which the passenger jet had departed, and British airports. It has since deployed expert teams to assess security practices at Egyptian airports, but flights to South Sinai have yet to be resumed.

Short link:


Ahram Online welcomes readers' comments on all issues covered by the site, along with any criticisms and/or corrections. Readers are asked to limit their feedback to a maximum of 1000 characters (roughly 200 words). All comments/criticisms will, however, be subject to the following code
  • We will not publish comments which contain rude or abusive language, libelous statements, slander and personal attacks against any person/s.
  • We will not publish comments which contain racist remarks or any kind of racial or religious incitement against any group of people, in Egypt or outside it.
  • We welcome criticism of our reports and articles but we will not publish personal attacks, slander or fabrications directed against our reporters and contributing writers.
  • We reserve the right to correct, when at all possible, obvious errors in spelling and grammar. However, due to time and staffing constraints such corrections will not be made across the board or on a regular basis.

© 2010 Ahram Online.