Egypt’s tourism authorities have discussed the controls that will be adopted for the resumption of cultural tourism activities in Egypt as of 1 September.
The controls were discussed at a meeting between Minister of Tourism and Antiquities, Khaled El-Anani, a number of ministry leaders, as well as the heads of the Egyptian Hotels Association (EHA) and the Egyptian Travel Agents Association (ETAA).
El-Anani stated that all museums and archaeological sites across Egypt will reopen to visitors as of 1 September. Egyptians and foreigners will be allowed to travel between cities, archaeological monuments and various museums, so long as they adhere to the precautionary measures to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19).
This will occur alongside the established controls for tourism buses and all activities associated with the country’s cultural tourism, to a maximum of 50% of their respective capacities.
Single tourist groups should not exceed 25 individuals at archaeological sites and museums. Tour guides are required to wear face masks and conduct tours using headphones inside museums, following which they are required to sterilise the headphones after each use.
This comes in addition to carrying out a daily disinfection of common surfaces and museum floors before opening to visitors. At the same time, body temperatures of workers and visitors will be measured, and visitors will be required to maintain safe distances from each other.
El-Anani indicated that a maximum number of visitors at any one time has been set for museums and uncovered archaeological sites across the country. This stands at 200 visitors per hour that will be allowed at the same time has for the Egyptian Museum in Cairo’s Tahrir Square, and 100 visitors per hour to other museums.
A maximum of 10 to 15 visitors will be allowed inside any pyramid or ancient cemetery at the same time. In addition, the organising of any Nile Cruises trips on floating hotels have been postponed until October 2020.
To support and encourage cultural tourism programmes in Upper Egypt, El-Anani directed to extend the period for the “Summer in Upper Egypt” initiative. The initiative was launched by the ministry to encourage tourists to continue visiting archaeological sites in Upper Egypt until 31 October 2020. The minister’s directive came during his presiding over the Supreme Council of Antiquities meeting last June.
The initiative grants a 50% reduction on full ticket prices for foreign visitors to museums and archaeological sites in Upper Egypt. All foreign tourists will pay a fixed rate, which stands at the price as foreign student tickets, which represents 5% of the full ticket price.