Jeddah-Aqaba passenger cruises to launch after Eid holiday

A ship is seen in the sea of Aqaba recently. Cruise ships are set to be a familiar scene in Aqaba. (Photo: Nada Yassin/Jordan News)
A ship is seen in the sea of Aqaba recently. Cruise ships are set to be a familiar scene in Aqaba. (Photo: Zoe Sottile/Jordan News)
AQABA — The Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC) said on Friday that it will launch a line of cruise ships for the first time between the Saudi Arabian city of Jeddah, Aqaba, and Egypt within two weeks.اضافة اعلان

The company, which works in the field of cruise ships, told local media that the first tourist trips between Saudi Arabia, Jordan, and Egypt will also be launched on July 23, under the name of the Red Sea Tourist Tours. MSC, a Switzerland-based company, is collaborating with Cruise Saudi to conduct the tours and boost Saudi’s image as a site for cruises.

The company indicated that cruise ship trips between Jordan and Saudi Arabia will have a capacity of more than 3,000 tourists, at a rate of 3 to 4 trips per month.

The company expects that the second trips from the new line will take place on the 8th of next August.

Voyagers, after starting in the historical port city of Jeddah, will then visit Al Wajh and see the UNESCO World Heritage Site at Al Ula. After stopping in Aqaba, they’ll swing up to see the ancient city of Petra. Then, tourists will stop in the coastal town of Safaga in Egypt before visiting Luxor and Yanbu.

Additionally, Commissioner for Tourism and Economic Affairs at the Aqaba Special Economic Zone Authority (ASEZA) Sharhabeel Madi told Jordan News that a scheduled tourists line will transport guests from the Gulf countries to visit the Golden Triangle of Aqaba, Wadi Rum, and Petra.

Madi said that promoting this triangle “will have a significant and beneficial economic impact on the Kingdom.” Historically, the Gulf has been an important source of tourist revenues for Jordan, though this has slowed due to the pandemic.

The commissioner expressed hope that the cruise ships will promote foreign spending in Jordan and give the economy a much-needed boost.

In a press release, MSC reported that they are committing to vaccinating all of their crew members, though they do not require passengers to be vaccinated against COVID-19.

Chairman of Aqaba Hotels Association and owner of the Days Inn hotel in Aqaba Salah Al Bitar told Jordan News that, “We hope that this new marine tourism line between Saudi Arabia and Jordan will enhance the tourism sector in Jordan and contribute to attracting more tourists to the city of Aqaba in particular and Jordan in general, for the benefit of the hotel sector, which has been negatively affected during the past two years due to the coronavirus pandemic.”

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