Egypt remains popular tourism destination for Latvians

Conflicts in the Middle East raise the question on how safe it is to travel there. Latvian tour operators say that there are currently no organized tours to the Middle East, Latvian Radio reported on April 19.

This week, tour operator TezTour opened its summer season with flights to 12 popular destinations in Turkey, Greece, Italy, Bulgaria, Georgia, Cyprus, and Spain. Among the Middle Eastern countries, trips are organized only to Egypt.

Nadežda Babetskova, spokesperson for TezTour's reservations department, said that as the situation in the Middle East escalates, tourists have been enquiring about trips to Egypt.

"The first question for tourists about security was, of course, Egypt. According to the airline representatives, all flights that do take place are safe. We, as large operators, are in constant contact with the host country offices of all travel destinations and, of course, we follow the decisions and information of the Latvian authorities," said Babetskova.

The company works "in all directions with the national airline airBaltic, so of course we also rely on the safety of the flight to each specific destination being checked by the airline's responsible authorities. If there is even the slightest risk to passenger safety, neither the Latvian authorities nor the authorities of the country of destination will authorize flights on a particular route. Therefore, if the flights are operated, it is safe," the tour operator's representative said.

Inga Kavaca, head of the Latvian Association of Travel Agents and Tour Operators, said that changes in the travel offer to the Middle East region took place already in the autumn last year.

"The Middle East as such is not a very popular and well-known destination for Latvian travelers. There was Israel, well, airBaltic stopped flying to Israel a long time ago, so there is no direct travel to this country.

"There are no charter trips to Israel, to Jordan, to Lebanon, to countries in the region. It is also not a destination where people usually go for a holiday. People go to Egypt in the winter, to the Arab Emirates, to Tenerife, to Madeira, and to the Mediterranean in the summer," said Kavaca.

The situation in the Middle East is tense and risks of further escalation persist, Foreign Ministry spokesperson Diāna Eglīte stressed.

"First of all, we strongly urge people to refrain from going to Israel,in view of the unpredictable developments that have already been taking place since the Hamas attack on Israel on October 7," Eglīte said.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs also urges "Latvian citizens to avoid traveling to Iran under any circumstances. There is also Iraq in the Middle East region, a country where, from a security point of view, it would not be advisable for people to go without a legitimate need. We also urge people not to visit Lebanon and Jordan in the border area with Syria", Eglīte said.

"We know that Egypt remains a very popular destination. For Egypt, we recommend using only reliable travel agencies, this is very important because when planning trips and excursions on the ground in Egypt, if such itineraries are organized by competent travel companies, they are coordinated with the responsible authorities," explained the Foreign Ministry spokesperson.

Tourists have to take into account that the economic situation and geopolitical events have made travel more expensive.

Seen a mistake?

Select text and press Ctrl+Enter to send a suggested correction to the editor

Select text and press Report a mistake to send a suggested correction to the editor

Related articles


Most important