Russian Tour Operators: Greece could replace Turkey as top destination
Russian vacationing in Greece, Cyprus, Bulgaria, and Israel could grow in 2016, according to Maya Lomidze, executive director of the Association of Tour Operators of Russia (ATOR).
“It’s so far difficult to anticipate the 2016 summer season, and the summer prices will be known only in February. We don’t expect Turkey to be a travel destination this year. The demand for destinations alternative to it in terms of price, set of services, and visa requirements may grow. Greece has quite a good chance to replace it, with its only disadvantage being that it’s a country requiring a visa. If they don’t take some steps to simplify the visa requirements, they might lose this chance,” Lomidze said.
Cyprus could also attract Russian tourists instead of Turkey, as it is located in the same Mediterranean area and is comparable to Turkey in price terms, Lomidze added. “The situation in Bulgaria is also good, as you don’t have to undergo fingerprinting for a visa, and the country has its own currency, which might be more beneficial. And Israel also has every chance owing to its Tourism Ministry’s outstanding activity,” she commented.