After four years, the UK government has lifted its ban on flights to and from the popular Egyptian resort town of Sharm El Sheikh

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A sunrise in Sharm el Sheikh © Daria Arseneva / 500px

The Foreign Commonwealth Office (FCO) announced a ban on flights originating in the UK back in 2015, after Russian Metrojet Flight 9268 bound for St Petersburg was bombed, killing all of the 224 passengers on board. 

Located on the southern coast of the Gulf of Aqaba, the region was a popular package holiday destination for Europeans. Known for its mega-hotels and the family travellers that favour all-inclusive holidays, its beaches were left nearly without the crowds after the crash. 

Fish and divers swim through deep blue water.
Group of scuba divers diving Yolanda wreck off Sharm El Sheikh in Egypt © UnderTheSea / Shutterstock

According to a UK government news release, there have been improvements in security procedures at the airport and “close co-operation between the UK and Egypt on aviation security”. The government will now work with airlines that are interested in operating flights to the area. Grant Shapps, the secretary of state for transport, said in a statement: “We look forward to services to Sharm El Sheikh resuming, and lifting the restriction is the first step in that process.” 

However, the FCO is still warning against all travel to the Governorate of South Sinai, “except the area within the Sharm El Sheikh perimeter barrier, which includes the airport and the areas of Sharm el Maya, Hadaba, Naama Bay, Sharks Bay and Nabq,” as well as other regions.

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