By Hend Kortam
CAIRO, Dec. 8 (Aswat Masriya) - Travelers visiting the recently-inaugurated museum inside Cairo International Airport will pay $3 per ticket and can access the exhibition at any time of the day, the antiquities ministry said on Tuesday.
The ministers of antiquities and aviation opened the museum on Monday displaying 39 artifacts curated from different museums across the nation.
Antiquities Minister Mamdouh al-Damaty said the museum includes 21 artifacts from the Egyptian Museum, 12 pieces from the Museum of Islamic Arts and six from the Coptic Museum, in a statement posted on the ministry's Facebook page on Tuesday.
The space was launched to promote Egypt's struggling tourism sector which has been affected by years of political turmoil.
Damaty said its contents reflect the "richness" of Egyptian history and the "diversity of its cultural treasures."
Egypt hopes that when travelers transiting through Cairo enter the museum, they will want to return to Egypt to visit more museums and historic sites.
The museum was due to be launched earlier but its inauguration was postponed after a Russian passenger plane crashed in the Sinai desert on Oct. 31, killing all 224 passengers and crew. The plane took off from the popular tourist hub Sharm el-Sheikh and was mainly carrying Russian vacationers.
Egypt fears the effects of the plane crash on tourism. Its most active militant group in North Sinai, Sinai Province, an affiliate of ISIS, claimed responsibility for downing the plane twice and the Kremlin said the crash was an act of terrorism caused by an explosive. Egypt is still carrying out an investigation into what caused the crash.
Egyptian tourism was slowly inching towards recovery when the Russian plane crashed. The tragic incident put Egyptian airport security under international scrutiny.
Egypt’s tourism minister said last month that he expects the number of tourists to drop by 13 percent in 2015/2016, compared to the year before, reaching 9 million tourists, and revenues to fall by 15 percent.
If the airport museum is a successful tourist attraction, more spaces inside the airport may be used to display artifacts, minister Kamal said. He added that the possibility of setting up similar museums in Sharm el-Sheikh and Hurghada would also be considered.