Gazeta.ru reports that Russian tour operators registered only an insignificant increase in travel to Turkey after President Putin lifted the ban on sales of organized tours to the country. Since the coveted destination became accessible, only one of 20 inquiring potential Russian tourists actually bought a trip to Turkey. A representative of a Russian tour operator stated that Russian tourists are still reluctant to travel to Turkey because of security concerns after the recent terrorist attack at the Istanbul Ataturk airport claimed 41 lives.
Vice President of the Russian Association of Tour Operators Dmitry Gorin stated that he doesn’t expect the number of Russian tourists visiting Turkey to exceed 70,000 per month, or 10 times less than a year ago. Tourists wishing to visit Turkey have to wait until charter companies organize flights or fork out as much as USD 1,550 for a seat on regular flights (which, naturally, are almost fully booked).
Cyprus also registered a significantly lower number of Russian tourists, but for a different reason – its tourist destinations are 20-30% more expensive than Turkey. Against such a backdrop, Russian tourist destinations register a modest growth although they, too, are more expensive than Turkey.