For which foreign countries without direct flights is still in demand

The geopolitical crisis and difficulties with aviation have deprived many previously popular destinations among Russians of popularity. However, say tour operators and their retail partners, the situation is not uniform. We found out which previously popular countries continue to be of interest to tourists even without direct flights, and which are practically not in demand.

During the geopolitical crisis, the geography of comfortable foreign travel has narrowed to 32 countries where you can fly from Russia with direct flights.

And for those previously massive countries that are now not connected with Russia by direct flights, Russian tourists for the most part have lost interest. Due to the complexity of the path and the high cost. While travelers are much more likely to use connecting flights in 2022 than they have been in the past, not everyone likes these options. Especially if they are also too expensive, travel retailers say. That is why there is really good demand now only in those countries that can be reached by direct flights.

“Countries where you need to get with connections are no longer in demand by mass tourists. Yes, we sometimes receive requests for Hungary, Italy, there are requests for the Dominican Republic, Vietnam. But we are talking about single, and, as a rule, VIP requests. In many “difficult” destinations, the passion of most mass tourists disappears immediately as soon as they find out how much such a trip will cost,” says Georgy Pogosov, managing director of the Marcelina Travel network of travel agencies.

< p>“European countries, and many Asian countries without direct flights, have practically ceased to be sold in recent months. But Mexico is on sale, despite the absence of a direct flight, although, of course, not as actively as before, ”they shared their observations in the federal network of travel agencies“ 1001 tour ”.

You can buy a tour to Mexico from Russian Express for 381.4 thousand rubles. for two. The price is relevant for departure at the end of February.

WHICH EUROPEAN COUNTRIES ARE NOT DEMANDED FROM RUSSIANS AT ALL, AND WHICH KEEP DEMAND

Outsiders in demand among previously popular destinations among Russians, according to tour operators, are Czech Republic, UK and the Netherlands. Single requests to Slovenia, Slovakia.

Travel agents, in turn, notice that one of the most popular European countries among Russians is now Hungary. The most frequently requested, but in the end quite rarely booked, is Italy. The lowest is the demand for the Czech Republic.

The VEDI GROUP company shares observations of tourist retail regarding Hungary, calling the country the most frequently booked European destination among Russians in the current situation.

They explain: there are no problems with a visa, an acceptable cost of air tickets (from 50-60 thousand rubles) and ground handling (from 68 euros per person for 3 nights in a 3* hotel, breakfast). It is also important that Hungary is a year-round destination that can satisfy absolutely any needs of tourists – from sightseeing and events to medical and recreational holidays, specify in VEDI GROUP.

THERE IS A DEMAND FOR GREECE AND CYPRUS FOR SUMMER

“Even in the current situation, there is demand for Europe. With the growing variety of connecting flight programs, tours to Europe are gradually becoming more affordable for tourists. But, of course, it is still very far from the previous volumes,” VEDI GROUP noted.

From the tour operator Ambotis Holidays, one of the leaders in Greece, you can now buy tours for the May holidays of 2023 in 4 * hotels in Halkidiki for 230-250 thousand rubles. for two with a flight for a week (departures at the end of April). The company says that Russians still have demand for this destination, although it is, of course, not so massive.

At the PAC Group tour operator, Greece is in the European TOP-3 along with Italy and Spain. But now 90% of Greek summer holiday bookings are in the premium segment, that is, the demand is not massive.

“Among the Greek hotels in this segment, we especially want to note the good demand for Sani Resorts in Halkidiki and Ikos Resorts ( in Chalkidiki and Corfu and Kos), it is already higher than in 2021,” the company says.

VEDI GROUP also registers a certain demand for summer Cyprus and Greece, the average sales depth is from 3 to 4 months. You can buy a tour to Cyprus with a departure in early June for 44.4 thousand rubles. for two for a week. Airfare must be added to the cost. Tariffs from Moscow to Larnaca at this time -65 thousand rubles. both ways per person. Flight with one connection in Cairo. On the way – 8 hours. 40 min.

You can go to Halkidiki with VEDI GROUP in June for 35 thousand rubles. for two for a week. To this amount you need to add the flight. You can fly from Moscow to Thessaloniki for 91 thousand rubles. both ways per person. There is only one change along the way, in Istanbul.

WHAT IS THE DEMAND FOR ITALY, SPAIN, FRANCE AND PORTUGAL

VEDI GROUP regularly receives requests for vacations in Italy and Spain, book city tours. And places in craft tours for fixed dates to France and Portugal were closed in record time.

A tour to France from VEDI GROUP can be bought for 84 thousand rubles. per person without flight. For the flight, you need to lay at least another 51 thousand rubles. per person on both sides. You can go to Portugal with VEDI GROUP for 86 thousand rubles. per person. Plus plane tickets – at least 98 thousand rubles. per person in both directions.

In Russian Express, customers who are still considering holidays in Europe most often pay attention to France and Italy. Less often – to Switzerland, Spain and Hungary. The rest of the countries of central Europe are point queries. A little more often – Germany and Austria.

RUSSIANS' DEMAND FOR VACCINATION TOURS TO CROATIA IS SMALL, BUT REMAINS

Surprisingly, experts also record the continuing interest of tourists in vaccination tours to Croatia, although, of course, it is significantly less than in covid. Of course, we are not talking about protection from the disease: they are mainly interested in those who then need to get to the United States.

“Vaccination tours to Croatia are still popular. Their cost is from 25 thousand rubles. Plus a flight,” VEDI GROUP said. You can fly from Moscow to Zagreb for 149 thousand rubles. per person on both sides. Flight with one connection in Istanbul, total travel time – 7 hours. 25 min

SERBIA: DIRECT FLIGHTS ARE TOO EXPENSIVE

Serbia is in good demand, according to experts. The country has affordable prices, Russians do not need a visa and there are direct flights from Russia. But the tariffs for the latter, as specified in VEDI GROUP, are not budgetary.

Therefore, tours to Serbia on direct flights from Moscow are quite expensive – from 225.7 thousand rubles. for two for 3 nights. If you replace a direct flight with a connecting one (change in Istanbul), then the cost of such a tour will decrease to 125.4 thousand rubles. for two.

“Serbia is chosen mainly by tourists who are interested in sightseeing and health-improving holidays. And this year, ski tours are also selling well,” say VEDI GROUP.

ASIA: LEADERS AMONG DOCTING DESTINATIONS ARE VIETNAM AND INDONESIA

From Asian destinations with which Russia is not currently connected connect direct flights, according to tour operators, Vietnam and Indonesia are in demand.

Thus, tour operators offering tourists package tours to Vietnam with a departure from Kazakhstan call the demand “good”. But we must understand that now we are talking about minimal volumes, incomparable with those that were in pre-Covid times.

“We offer Vietnam with a departure from Kazakhstan (Astana and Almaty). Despite the fact that the flight is not direct, the tours are well booked. We receive about 20-25 applications per day. They go to Phan Thiet and Mui Ne to completely different categories of hotels – from 2 * to 5 *. Recently, 3-4 * have been popular, which is typical for Asia. Tours from Kazakhstan to Vietnam cost at least 100 thousand rubles. per person. Tourists buy tickets to the cities of departure on their own,” ANEX Tour said.

They buy tours to Vietnam from FUN&SUN. The tour operator offers its tourists connecting flights on SCAT flights from Moscow. Transfer – in Almaty (route Moscow – Almaty – Cam Ranh). The tour operator has blocks of seats on these flights.

“Vietnam for February is almost sold out. We are working on extending the program until May,” FUN&SUN said.

You can buy a tour to Nha Trang for 16 nights with a departure on February 25 from FUN & SUN for 219.5 thousand rubles. for two (Senkotel 2 * hotel). If you fly in early March (March 8) and for a shorter period – 9 nights, then you can relax in Nha Trang at the Horizon Hotel Nha Trang 5 * for 195.7 thousand rubles. for two.

Tour to Vinpearl Resort & Spa Nha Trang Bay 5 * lasting 9 nights FUN & SUN estimates at 240.3 thousand rubles. for two. Departure on March 11.

Sales of tours to Indonesia from tour operators are also active (of course, this characteristic is relative, “active” as far as possible in the current realities). But official Indonesian statistics show that Russians have retained their interest in this country even without direct flights: in 2022, 74,143 Russian tourists rested in Indonesia. This is 46% of the level of 2019, when 158.9 thousand Russians visited the country.

With PAX, you can go to Indonesia in February for 207.6 thousand rubles. for two for a week. Indonesia with “Russian Express” is available for 255.4 thousand rubles. for two for 11 nights at the Swiss-Belhotel Rainforest 4* in Bali.

Alexandra Polyanskaya

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