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Egypt’s Tourism Industry Is Promising Growth with Visa-Free Access to 9 Countries

Egypt’s tourism is booming with visa-free access to 9 countries, including key GCC nations, enhancing travel and international relations.
17.06.24 | Source: Travel and tour world

In a strategic move to enhance tourism and ease travel, Egypt has extended visa-free entry to citizens from nine privileged countries, including several GCC nations such as Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates, along with Hong Kong, Lebanon, Macao, and Malaysia, while notably excluding Qatar. This policy not only simplifies entry procedures but also strengthens international relations and encourages more visitors from these regions, fostering a more interconnected and accessible travel environment.

Egypt’s tourism landscape is experiencing robust growth, underscored by a record-breaking influx of 15 million tourists in 2023—a steep rise from 4.9 million in 2021. The momentum is sustained in 2024, with a 27% increase in visitors in just the first four months, driven significantly by a 54% rise from Arab nations.

The Cairo City Break program, heart of Egypt’s strategy to revitalize its capital as a prime destination for extended weekends. By expanding the tourist experience to include an array of historical and cultural sites from various eras, this initiative is expected to double the hotel capacity in Cairo to 60,000 rooms in a span of five years, catering to the ever expanding demand for luxury tourism.

TTW Editor in Chief Mr. Anup Kumar Keshan said: “I believe Egypt’s strategic decision to offer visa-free access to select countries is significantly enhancing heritage and cultural tourism. This move attracts visitors eager to explore Egypt’s rich historical sites and vibrant cultural heritage. It not only simplifies travel but also strengthens Egypt’s status as a premier global destination for immersive cultural experiences.”

Cairo International Airport underscores Egypt’s growing prominence in air travel, maintaining its status as the busiest airport in the nation. In 2023, it facilitated travel for 26 million passengers, up 30% from the previous year, showcasing Cairo’s critical role as a hub for major airlines like Egyptair and Nile Air.

The economic impact of tourism is substantial, contributing approximately $32 billion to Egypt’s GDP in 2022. This marks a significant increase from $22.3 billion in 2021 and positions Egypt as the leader on the African travel and tourism competitiveness index.

The promising future of Egypt’s tourism sector, with projections showing the hospitality industry reaching $4.65 billion by 2029, and the overall travel and tourism market anticipated to grow annually by 5.98% to $7,226.00m by 2028. These statistics highlight Egypt’s effective use of policy and infrastructure to foster a thriving tourism environment that is set to attract even more international visitors in the years to come.

List of countries that can visit Egypt visa-free:

  • Bahrain

  • Hong Kong

  • Kuwait

  • Lebanon

  • Macao

  • Oman

  • Saudi Arabia

  • United Arab Emirates

  • Malaysia

Egypt’s strategic implementation of visa-free entry for select countries, including key GCC nations, is a testament to its commitment to enhancing tourism and strengthening international relations. This policy, combined with initiatives like the Cairo City Break program and the substantial growth in airport traffic, positions Egypt as a top destination for global travelers. The impressive rise in tourist numbers and the significant economic contributions from the tourism sector underscore Egypt’s successful efforts in revitalizing its tourism industry. With promising projections for the future, Egypt is set to continue its upward trajectory, attracting even more visitors and solidifying its status as a premier tourist destination.

Top 10 Tourist Spots in Egypt

  • Pyramids of Giza
    The last of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, these iconic pyramids are a testament to Egypt’s ancient civilization.

  • The Sphinx
    Adjacent to the Pyramids of Giza, this colossal limestone statue with a lion’s body and a human head remains an enduring symbol of Egypt.

  • Luxor’s Karnak Temple
    One of the largest temple complexes in the world, featuring colossal statues, intricate carvings, and the famous Hypostyle Hall.

  • Valley of the Kings
    Located on the west bank of the Nile, this valley is the burial site of many pharaohs, including the tomb of Tutankhamun.

  • The Egyptian Museum in Cairo
    Home to an extensive collection of ancient Egyptian artifacts, including the treasures of Tutankhamun.

  • Abu Simbel Temples
    Two massive rock temples carved into a mountainside by Ramses II, known for their impressive size and intricate carvings.

  • Temple of Hatshepsut
    A stunning mortuary temple dedicated to one of Egypt’s few female pharaohs, known for its unique architecture and terraces.

  • Siwa Oasis
    A remote and picturesque oasis in the Western Desert, known for its natural springs, salt lakes, and historic ruins.

  • Aswan High Dam
    An engineering marvel that controls the Nile River’s flow, creating Lake Nasser, one of the world’s largest man-made lakes.

  • Red Sea Coral Reefs
    Renowned for their vibrant marine life and crystal-clear waters, making it a top destination for diving and snorkeling enthusiasts.