The Jordan Tourism Board (JTB) is currently negotiating deals to bring low-cost airline carriers from the United Kingdom and Italy to Aqaba, a JTB official said on Tuesday.
It is hoped these “final stage” negotiations will bring in more tourists from these European destinations, adding to the current weekly flights from Brussels, Copenhagen, Stockholm and Helsinki, said JTB Managing Director Abed Al Razzaq Arabiyat.
The current four destinations, served by Royal Wings, bring an average of 400 tourists a week to the Kingdom through Aqaba, 330km south of Amman, with an average stay of seven nights, Arabiyat noted, adding that these tourists spend a minimum of $100 daily.
Additional direct low-cost carriers arrive directly from Russia.
Arabiyat highlighted the “competitive” price of airfare as an essential factor for attracting holidaymakers, with tickets priced at around 200 to 300 euros (around $211-$317).
The managing director added that the JTB supports the marketing of Jordan’s destinations alongside tour operators.
During the first 10 months of 2016, Aqaba city hosted around 532,000 tourists, most of whom came on direct charter flights, Nasser Shraideh, the chief commissioner of the Aqaba Special Economic Zone Authority told The Jordan Times recently.
In January, Aqaba was linked by direct flights to Beirut and Brussels, he said at the time, adding that the plan for 2017 is to start direct flights between London, Amsterdam, Düsseldorf, Cairo, Jeddah, Sharjah, Kuwait and Erbil, in cooperation with the JTB.
By Dana Al Emam
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