Israeli tourists desert Sinai resorts
The outbreak of the Palestinian uprising in October 2000 has taken a severe toll on tourism to the Sinai Peninsula. While in previous years Israeli tourists constituted 70 percent of all visitors to East Sinai’s resorts, their number has dropped by over 90 percent this current season.
In 1999 nearly a million visitors came to Sinai, many from Europe but mostly from nearby Israel. The dramatic drop in Israeli visitors this year has caused tourist resorts to incur great losses, having become increasingly dependent on visitors from neighboring Israel over the past decade.
Egyptian authorities have therefore launched aggressive marketing campaigns for the lucrative desert resorts, in Europe including England, Switzerland, and Germany. However, such campaigns have yet to show any real results.
Since the Intifada erupted last fall, Israel’s southern city of Eilat has become the preferred haven for Israeli tourists. The proportion of Israeli tourists in Eilat has doubled this year to 80 percent of all tourists, from 40 percent in previous seasons, according to Ha’aretz daily. ― (MENA Report)
© 2001 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)