Turkish tourism sector might lose $8B this year, if Russian tourists stay home


Russia has not yet finished bringing home tourists stuck abroad due to COVID-19, and some countries have begun to essentially invite them back to the beaches and other types of summer vacations. Russian experts believe that Russians are hardly worth preparing for their usual summer vacations abroad, as travel will be limited by the state under the pretext of maintaining safety, and insurance companies are not ready to issue the necessary travel policies.Due to the coronavirus pandemic, travel restrictions continue to apply in most countries. But with the approaching summer season in some countries, especially those whose economies are highly dependent on tourism, the weakening of the self-isolation regime is accompanied by statements about readiness to receive tourists from abroad, Nezavisimaya Gazeta writes .

Galina Dekhtyar, a professor at the Institute of Industry Management at the RANEPA, a tourism expert, has confirmed that many countries are somehow opening up for external tourism, however, from her point of view, Russians are hardly worth preparing for the usual summer vacation abroad.According to the expert, in any case we can talk about vacation with restrictions, both from the host side and from the domestic authorities.

On the other hand Turkey, one of the favorite destinations for Russian tourists, do not asks any specific health documentation to enter/exit Turkey. Back in 2016, during the diplomatic crisis between Turkey and Russia, Turkish tourism industry was hit hard, costing an estimated $8 billion in lost revenue.

Dekhtyar talks about another factor that could become the main limiter for outbound summer tourism in 2020: “All tourists traveling abroad must have an insurance policy, but the risks associated with COVID-19 cannot be calculated, therefore, no insurance company now wants to issue a policy taking into account such an insured event. There is a request for security from the majority of tourists. Surveys show that only about 20% of potential tourists are not at all concerned about security issues, however, more than 60% of tourists thoroughly choose products precisely from a security point of view, so it is unlikely that we will have a large request for summer trips to countries where they cannot provide clear measures to limit the spread of the virus, “says Dehtyar. She also believes that the Russian lack of knowledge when it comes to foreign languages ​​will become an additional restriction on Russian tourists traveling abroad. “Lack of knowledge of languages, inability to explain one’s well-being can also become an obstacle: in the event of a new outbreak in many countries there may simply not be enough specialists with the Russian language,” says Dekhtyar.