Low-cost carrier Air Cairo will introduce direct flights from Sharm El Sheikh in Egypt to Dubai later this month.

Starting April 20, the twice-weekly flights will operate from Dubai World Central (DWC) airport every Thursday and Monday.

SM492 will depart from DWC at 8.35am from and land at Sharm El Sheikh International airport (SSH) at 9.50am.

SM491 meanwhile will depart from SSH at 3.15am and land in Dubai at 7.35am.

Last month, the carrier announced the arrival of its 20th A320 neo. Air Cairo’s fleet as of the end of March stood at 30 aircraft.

Egypt reportedly wants to increase its visitor numbers by 25-30 per cent annually and attract 30 million tourists by 2028.

The country’s statistics agency Capmas said that Egypt’s tourism numbers dropped to 3.7 million in 2020 from about 13 million in 2019, before recovering to eight million in 2021.

Egypt’s revenue from the tourism sector decreased to US$4 billion in 2020 from around US$13 billion in 2019, before reaching US$9 billion in 2021.

Egypt’s tourism officials have indicated that the country would require 300,000 rooms and US$30 billion of investments in rooms as well as similar amounts of investments in customer experiences to help achieve its upcoming tourist goals.

Sharm El Sheikh is a popular resort destination lying on the southern tip of the Sinai Peninsula and recently hosted the UN Climate Change Conference in November 2022.

The new Air Cairo direct flight is expected to boost visitor numbers to the destination. “This direct flight will make a significant difference and traffic a pool of tourists out of the major hub of travelers from the UAE and other GCC countries. Indeed, it is great news for us as it will bring beneficial impacts and exposure to our luxurious properties situated at Sharm El Sheikh, which are Rixos Premium Seagate, Rixos Sharm El Sheikh, and the recently-opened Rixos Golf Villas Sharm El Sheikh with 100 luxurious villas, 18-hole golf course, and a clubhouse,” said Erkan Yildirim, managing director of Rixos Hotels Egypt.