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Foreign tourists' flow in Russia goes up ahead of Sochi Olympics

January 30, 2014, 18:55 UTC+3 30

Most often booked tours are to Moscow, St. Petersburg and Russia’s Krasnodar Region

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© ITAR-TASS/Alexandra Krasnova

MOSCOW, January 30. /ITAR-TASS/. The number of foreign tourists who visited Russia in 2013 has increased by ten percent, the head of the Russian Federal Agency for Tourism (Rostourism), Alexander Radkov, told a press-conference on Thursday.

He said there were no final statistics at the moment but the preliminary data showed a growth of ten percent in inbound international tourism, 6-8% in domestic tourism and 15% in outbound tourism.

“According to some reports from our partners, we received yesterday, the number of reservations by foreign tourists in Russia increased by 25% in 2013,” Radkov said, adding that the United States ranked first by the number of bookings with 47% growth, followed by China — 120%, Canada — 41% and France — 22%.

He also said that most often booked tours were to Moscow, St. Petersburg and Russia’s Krasnodar Region, where the number of reservations had grown by 71% ahead of the Olympic Games in Sochi.

Speaking about the Olympics, Radkov said it would certainly attract a large number of tourists, providing a unique opportunity to Sochi to advance in foreign markets. At the same time, it would be necessary to decide after the Sochi Olympic Games how to position the resort in future, to develop beach-related rest in summer and skiing in winter, alongside to promote off-season business tourism.

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