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UK travellers face three day wait for Sharm el Sheikh departure

UK travellers face three day wait for Sharm el Sheikh departure

The remaining British nationals in Egypt should be able to fly home by the weekend, according the latest update from Egyptian officials.

Routine flights were suspended following the crash of a Russian Metrojet flight from Sharm el-Sheikh to St Petersburg on October 31st.

All 224 people on board died when the aircraft came down in the Sinai desert.

Some 20,000 British nationals were thought to be in the resort at the time of the crash, with many struggling to return to the UK.

Special flights began on Friday, with UK foreign secretary Philip Hammond confirming 7,000 Britons had left by the end of Tuesday.


In a statement, Egypt’s ministry of tourism said: “We are working closely with our airport operators, airlines, holiday companies and the relevant international authorities to assist all tourists who are currently waiting to return home to the UK and Russia from Sharm el Sheikh to do so.

“We are endeavouring to process as many people as possible through the airport as safely and quickly as we can.”

The airport is operating at its maximum capacity, handling 4,300 passengers per hour divided between arrivals and departures for both domestic and international flights.

UK airlines are operating ten to 11 passenger flights per day.

“With this schedule we hope to have cleared the backlog of passengers in the next three days,” added the Egyptian ministry of tourism.

“We will continue to ensure that we are doing everything possible to assist tourists as they wait.”

Passengers are being allowed to travel with hand baggage only - their hold luggage is to be flown back separately by the government in the next week.