Aviation and tourism show good health

At the same time as the end of the state of health emergency from this Wednesday, the obligation to present a health form on arrival in Morocco, the last health measure still in force until now, has also been abolished.

In any case, this was explained by the National Airports Office (ONDA) in a press release published on its Twitter account on Tuesday. From now on, travelers entering Morocco no longer need to present the health card. Indeed, “it is no longer required to access the national territory”, announced the airport authority of the country in four languages: Arabic, English, Spanish and French.

ONDA also reported some news of international air traffic at airports in parallel. Thus, Morocco’s airports welcomed 1,981,294 passengers, an increase of 6% compared to 2019 (base year). International air traffic at Moroccan airports in January 2023 increased by 8% (1,779,954 passengers) compared to January 2019 (the reference year).

Air traffic with Europe, which represents 83% of international air traffic, increased by 13%, while air traffic with North America increased by 32% compared to January 2019. As for air traffic with Africa, the Middle and Far East and the Maghreb countries, significant recovery rates were recorded, estimated at 98%, 94% and 56% respectively. For its part, domestic air traffic recorded 201,340 passengers in January 2023, with an estimated recovery rate of 91%, compared to the same period in 2019.

And detailing the air traffic of January 2023, the ONDA indicates significant rates of evolution compared to the reference year, January 2019 in this case, in the airport structures of the Kingdom. Fez-Saiss airport is the airport with the least traffic this month with an increase in passengers of 8% all the same. Marrakech Menara for its part experienced an increase of 13% while that of Agadir Al Massira saw the passenger flow increase to 16% and that of Essaouira to 19%.

The airports of Tangier Ibn Battouta and Oujda les Angads experienced a higher influx with 40% and 41% respectively. The airports of Zagora (93%), Casablanca-Nouaceur Mohammed V (92%), Al-Hoceima (90%), Dakhla (88%) and Tetouan (85%) achieved the greatest figures. The airports of Ouarzazate (71%) and Errachidia (58%) also performed well. So good for the air, and with that, excellent omens for tourism which is already growing from it compared to 2019.

Zoubir Bouhout, tourism expert and president of the Provincial Tourism Council of Ouarzazate indicated, in a statement to MoroccoLatestNews, that the cancellation of the health card is “an administrative measure which should help the influx of tourists”, stressing that any measure related to travel conditions encourages potential tourists to come and visit Morocco. With this measure lifted, the Kingdom will present itself as a privileged destination, in particular due to strong competition with certain countries which restrict the freedom to travel.

And to continue: “During the four months of last year, there was a weakness in the level of tourism performance. With this decision, tourism will prosper, in particular with the imposition of the electronic visa, hence tangible results in perspective which should benefit the tourism sector”. Our interlocutor called for the launch of direct flights to Morocco, and the provision of infrastructure to accommodate potential tourists, while adopting flexibility in terms of reception conditions, stressing all the same that other destinations in Morocco still need to make more efforts.

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