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Fewer Russians plan trips abroad for May holidays

April 21, 2014, 11:53 UTC+3 MOSCOW

The demand for trips to Latvia and Lithuania has been affected most of all, it is close to zero now, says press secretary of the Russian Union of Tourism Industry

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© ITAR-TASS/Yury Mashkov

MOSCOW, April 21. /ITAR-TASS/. The Russian Union of Tourism Industry says the demand for foreign trips for upcoming May holidays (May 1-10) has dropped by 20-30% year-on-year.

The Union’s press secretary Irina Tyurina explains it by “weaker ruble and by the foreign policy factors.” Russians try to save money, she added.

“Due to the lower demand for sightseeing trips to Europe, operators do not order additional flights for the holidays, like they used,” she continued. “The demand has dropped mostly for the trips to the Baltic region: the demand for Latvia and Lithuania has been affected most of all - it is close to zero now; rather good is still the demand for trips to Estonia, which managed to attract tourists by an offer to receive a multi-entry visa and by affordable air fares.”

“The general negative trend has not affected trips to resorts: traditionally high is the demand for Czech and Hungarian resorts.”

The tourists, who still chose to travel on holidays, preferred to go Egypt, Thailand and Vietnam.

“We have registered growing demand for holidays in Armenia, Georgia, Uzbekistan and Azerbaijan,” the press secretary said. She believes those destinations have attracted the tourists who would usually spend holidays in Ukraine, as well as those who chose to refrain from visiting Europe due to euro’s high exchange rate.

The tourist operators are more optimistic about the upcoming summer season, she said. “Most companies have already received bookings up to September. Operators expect the summer will not be easy, still not unprofitable: most companies have made rather balanced plans."

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