Foreigners traveling to Russia must from today provide a specified pre-fixed route of places to visit.
“This isn’t great for the country’s image among tourists,” says Vladimir Kantorovich, deputy chief of the tour operators’ association, interviewed by Rossiskaya Gazeta.
The association refer to the new rules approved by the Federal Migration Service, making it obligatory for foreigners to list all places they are going to visit. In addition, visitors must provide to the migration authorities, where they will register and information about the host.
The requirement are more detailed than before, as incoming tourists could do registration as they travelled without specifying the exact time and place to be.
Vladimir Kantorovich with the tourists’ association don’t think it will be difficult to supply such information since “most tourists entering the country tend to know exactly what places they plan to visit.” … but,…”On the other, it can negatively affect the incoming flow of independent foregin travellers as they just do not know about the route, or might change the route depending on circumstances.”
Tourists from Europe to Russia, normally counting for some 60 percent of all foreigners, decreased by 20 to 30 percent in 2014.
In the other end, tourists from South Korea to Russia increased by 70 percent last year, believed to be caused by the visa waiver between the two countries.
Related stories from around the North:
Canada: The environmental and social impacts of Arctic tourism, Eye on the Arctic
Finland: Traffic over Finnish-Russian border drops by one third, Yle News
Greenland: Air Greenland plans another summer of Iqaluit-Nuuk flights, CBC News
Iceland: Flights to Iceland to start next March from Edmonton, Canada, CBC News
Norway: Ruble crash will have a huge negative impact on cross-border trade”, Barents Observer
Russia: Russia-Norway border traffic follows ruble downward, Barents Observer
Sweden: Air route links Norway, Sweden and Finland in Arctic, Barents Observer
United States: Warming may hurt and help tourism in Southeast Alaska, Alaska Dispatch