A worker wearing a protective gear disinfects the stairs of the Albatros White Beach Resort, amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, in Hurghada, Egypt, June 19, 2020. (Reuters)
Egypt said on Friday that 34 new hotels and resorts in seven governorates have received the new hygiene safety certificate required to reopen in the wake of the coronavirus, bringing the total number of hotels open nationwide to 266.
Abdel Fatah El-Asy, deputy tourism and antiquities minister for oversight of hotels and touristic establishments, said that the new hotels include four in the Red Sea governorate, eight in South Sinai, ten in Cairo and two in Matrouh governorate.
One new hotel received the certificate in Aswan, six in Port Said, and three in Mansoura.
The hotels received their certificates after fulfilling new regulations put in place by the ministry, in accordance with the standards of the World Health Organization (WHO).
The rules include procedures requiring regular disinfection, and mandate that occupancy rates be reduced, initially to 25 percent and since the beginning of June to 50 percent.
The government announced this week that regular international flights will be gradually resumed at all Egyptian airports starting from July 1, with exemptions for foreign tourists, who will only be allowed into three coastal governorates as part of tour groups, to help offset the vital sector’s losses amid the pandemic.
The areas that will open for foreign tourists in the first stage are South Sinai, where the popular seaside resort of Sharm El-Sheikh is located, the Red Sea governorate, home to the city of Hurghada, and Marsa Matrouh on the Mediterranean.
The tourism sector is an essential source of foreign currency for the country.