Cox & Kings has released its Middle East programme for 2021 with a move to reduce maximum group size to 18, and a general reduction to an average of 14 people.
The operator has reduced its group travel size down from a maximum of 26 previously and said the use of larger vehicles will also now allow more room while travelling.
The move comes alongside “a meticulous new set of safety protocols to combat coronavirus concerns”, such as how guides interact with guests and colleagues, to checking in, visiting sites and moving around.
Cox & Kings is also introducing no single supplement for the first three solo places booked across the majority of its escorted tours to incentivise bookings.
The launch of its North Africa, Middle East and Central Asia programme will be followed by the rest of the world, with regions due to be released online at intervals throughout the summer and the 2021 Worldwide brochure due out early September, the operator said.
While the focus of the North Africa, Middle East and Central Asia brochure is “best sellers and the client favourites”, Lebanon is being added with prominence for 2021 having been released in 2020 “under the radar with great success”.
New to the Lebanon programme is the Land of the Phoenicians eight-day group tour (from £1,795) featuring Byblos and Sidon, Beirut, Baalbek, wine tasting at Chateau Ksara winery, and a visit to the monasteries of the Qadisha valley.
“North Africa and the Middle East has always been popular with our guests and we’re seeing strong demand for 2021 holidays from our clients,” said Kerry Golds, managing director of Cox & Kings. “We’re proud to be introducing new features to our escorted tour portfolio that we believe sets Cox & Kings apart from the competition and will provide the reassurance our clients deserve that their well-being is always our top priority.”
In Egypt for 2021, Cox & Kings highlights the tomb of Tutankhamun in Luxor will now be accessible to maximum of 10 people at a time, with authorities also counting on the inauguration of the Grand Egyptian Museum at the Giza plateau to spur tourism.
Other tours include Jordan, Israel & The OPT; The Wonders of Jordan & Jerusalem; Oman Grand Tour; and Central Asia Explorer in Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan.