Cancellation of iFly flights to Egypt exception not to be repeated: Russia’s ATOR

Ahram Online , Wednesday 28 Dec 2022

Russia's Association of Tours Operators (ATOR) has stressed that the cancellation of the flights programme of the Russian iFly airline to Egypt is an exception, giving assurance that the situation would not be repeated with other Russian carriers flying abroad.

iFly Airlines
Russia s iFly Airlines


According to Russian News Agency TASS, the airline notified leading Russian tourist company Tez Tour on Monday that it was forced to cancel its programme of international flights from Russia to Egypt because it was not authorised to use Jordan’s airspace.  

In a statement on Tuesday, ATOR executive director Maya Lomidze said all other flight programmes operated by aircraft of other airlines will fly to Egypt.

In addition, ATOR Vice President for Outbound Tourism Artur Muradyan said " nothing threatens flights to Egypt on planes of other air carriers."

The situation with iFly "has more of a private nature, so other carriers should not have problems and they have enough aircraft to carry out the scheduled programmes on time," Muradyan told Interfax.

On December 15, iFly airline suspended the flight program from Moscow to Hurghada and Sharm el-Sheikh due to Jordan’s decision not to allow Russian aircrafts with dual registration to pass through the country's airspace. Since then ifly did not resume flights to Egypt. 

As a result, thousands of tourists – clients of the Tez Tour tour operator – could not fly on time for vacation or return to Russia from Egyptian resorts.

Russia’s Federal Agency for Air Transport recommended at this time that the carrier provide its passengers with seats onboard the aircraft of other airlines to compensate them for the delay.

Jordan stated that it had banned iFly from entering its airspace because it required the air operator to obtain an insurance certificate that is issued in London.

Egypt is among the top five destinations for Russian tourists in the summer season, according to a report issued by the Association of Tour Operations of Russia in September.

EgyptAir has earlier announced that starting 18 December it will increase its weekly flights from Cairo to Moscow from 11 to 14 flights.

It also announced that it is currently coordinating with travel agents to increase direct flights between Moscow and the Red Sea resort cities of Sharm El-Sheikh and Hurghada to 28 flights per week starting 2023, up from 10 flights currently.

EgyptAir said that the move aims to support Russian tourism to Egypt’s Red Sea resorts.

Direct flights to Egypt from the Russian Federation are operated by Russian airlines Aeroflot, AZUR air, Red Wings, Egyptian EgyptAir and AlMasria Universal Airlines.

Egypt’s Minister of Tourism and Antiquities Ahmed Eissa told journalists on Friday that the number of Russian tourists to Egypt has doubled from June to October compared to earlier in the year.

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