Always a bit a mystery to me, travel warnings. The differences between countries suggest they have access to different intel, but why would the Netherlands, Germany, the UK, the US, etc. not share tourism relevant security information? They seem to cooperate quite nicely on prying on normal citizens. Usually the UK and the US are quicker in issuing warnings, now the Germans and Dutch beat them to it with their travel agents evacuating South Sinai tourists from Sharm and Dahab.
The adagium seems to be ‘better safe than sorry’, something difficult to argue with. But the economic damage of such warnings is considerable. The 2011 downfall of the Mubarak regime and its immediate aftermath caused a huge drop in arrivals. Numbers were on their way up, but got another serious hit from the post military take-over violence last year.
With the Sinai now also in a scary light, that is not going to improve any time soon. Have a look at the longer term trend pre-revolution, illustrating the growing importance of tourism for the country’s economy:
And have a look at the recent figures:
The power of small groups of fanatical idiots to hold countries to ransom by exploiting the psychologically unstable to commit acts of terror is a disturbing reality. For the pampered like me who enjoy spending free time in beautiful beach-side bubbles like Dahab, but much more so for all those dependent upon tourism.