Tourism sees a rise in the Middle East

Six years since the Arab Spring started in Tunisia, causing turmoil in the Middle East, it has now started to gain ground. Spain has long been Britain’s best preferred holiday destination, but various global events have seen its popularity soar to record levels in the recent years. In August 2016, arrivals peaked at an all time high of over 10.1 million with numbers increasing again this year after a series of tour cancellations following terror attacks.
A number of tour operators specializing North Africa and the Middle East have also gone bust, including Jewel in the Crown, which claimed to be the largest independent tour operator to Turkey. Last month in Tunisia, the Foreign Office was satisfied with the improvement in security situations in Tunisia. It was declared safe for British passport-holders to return. While the big tour operators are yet to respond by reintroducing the North African nation in their brochures, there are of confidence growing among holidaymakers. Tour operator Cox and Kings has seen its escorted trips to the Middle East go up by 40 per cent compared to last year, with passenger numbers up by almost 50 per cent. There has been an even bigger increase in customized tours. The countries that have witnessed maximum interest include Jordan, Oman and Iran.
Many travel operators have seen passenger numbers go up by 60 and 70 per cent since last year on its trips to Egypt and Jordan, respectively. It plans to add more departures for both destinations next year, with a focus on cycling and food tours.

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