UK

Egypt air crash: More UK-Sharm el-Sheikh flights cancelled

Empty arrivals hall at Sharm el-Sheikh airport Image copyright AP
Image caption The arrivals hall at Sharm el-Sheikh airport will remain empty of British tourists for at least the next two weeks

Airlines have suspended flights from the UK to Sharm el-Sheikh for at least the next two weeks.

Monarch, easyJet, Thomson Airways and Thomas Cook Airlines have now cancelled all outbound flights to the Egyptian resort up to 25 November.

British Airways is not selling new tickets for flights up to 23 November.

Flights were halted last week after the UK government said the Sinai plane crash which killed 224 people on 31 October may have been caused by a bomb.

Ministers made the decision after experts reviewed the security at Sharm el-Sheikh airport.

Some 20,000 British nationals, at least 9,000 of them holidaymakers, were thought to be in the resort at the time.

Baggage restrictions

Inbound flights to the UK resumed on Friday and by Monday evening, some 7,473 passengers had been brought back.

They are only allowed to travel with hand baggage; hold luggage is to be flown back separately in the next week.

Image copyright AFP

Announcing the cancellations up to 25 November, a Monarch spokesman said: "We recognise this is a very frustrating situation and apologise for the inconvenience this is causing our customers."

Thomson said: "All customers booked to travel to Sharm el-Sheikh in this period will be provided with a full refund or can amend to any holiday currently on sale.

"Customers travelling to Sharm el-Sheikh up to and including 10 December 2015 will be able to amend their booking free of charge to any holiday taken by the end of April 2016."

Easyjet said it hoped to bring all of its customers home by the end of next weekend at the latest.

"Our plan is to bring home as many passengers every day as we can, and to prioritise those who have been delayed the longest," it said.

"The reality of this is that many of our passengers will be delayed for up to three days."

British Airways says it is keeping the situation beyond Thursday "under review", but is not taking bookings from new passengers on flights up to and including 23 November.

The US and the UK have both said intelligence points to the strong possibility the crash in the Sinai Peninsula was caused by a bomb - militants affiliated to so-called Islamic State, also known as Isil, have claimed responsibility.

Egypt has now launched its own inquiry into what happened after a member of the international team investigating the crash last week told Reuters that they were "90% sure" that a sound heard in the last moments of the recording of the plane's cockpit voice recorder was an explosion caused by a bomb.

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