The blocking of Turkish resorts exposed the problems of the Russian infrastructure
The news of the termination of tourist exchange with Turkey before June 1 shocked the tourist industry and tourists.
Tensions are fueled by uncertainty about the closing deadline for this popular family vacation destination. The internet is exploding with frustration. Not only those who bought tours to Turkey are indignant, but also tourists intending to relax in other places – prices have skyrocketed everywhere, especially in Russian hotels, even parliamentarians in the person of Valentina Matvienko…
The public previously cautiously commented on the level of infrastructure in the Krasnodar Territory and Crimea. Now the “deep people” castigate officials with profanity, openly and angrily criticize the resorts.
Tourist business professionals shrug their shoulders: in most cases, they cannot find for tourists a worthy alternative to Turkish beach holidays in their native land. Travel agent Natalia Belyaeva shares with colleagues in the Travel Presidium Facebook group: “Prices in Sochi are space, of course, those who have been outside the Russian Federation compare and refuse to go. In many hotels, the number of rooms has not been renovated for almost half a century. ”
One of the major tour operators admitted that it is safer for him to choose a replacement for the forcedly canceled tours on international routes. And even if the big brands of outbound tourism declare that they are ready to provide an alternative in the Kuban, this is nothing more than a maneuver – a refusal comes to a tourist’s request, then another refusal, then another. Further, the client’s nerves usually cannot stand it, and he chooses options that are inconvenient for himself. Everyone is dissatisfied and upset: tourist, travel agent, tour operator. Only two large companies have strong positions in the Russian south – Biblio Globus and Alean… But the former has not yet launched its regional programs in Turkey, therefore, in comparison with its competitors, there are not so many tourists whose tours need to be rescheduled. ALEAN works only in Russia.
It has been known for a long time that the average Russian hotels are rude to partners from the tourist business, but after the summer of 2020 it has acquired an unprecedented scale. Now even “House at Ashot” turns up its nose from intermediaries, which are considered in our south by tour operators and travel agents. Not by chance “Pegas Touristik” refused to work with the hotel “Akvaloo” in Sochi. Representatives of the company do not diplomatically comment on the details of the conflict, but local experts are sure that the point is that the hotelier is not negotiable.
Maya Kotlyar, a travel agent from Moscow, writes on his Facebook page: “We have Sochi and Crimea, where 70% of the rooms are sold out for May and summer. The demand is unprecedented. And the prices for the top five, commensurate with Turkish quality – for a week from 200-250 thousand per room. That is, two weeks – 500 thousand. Finding such a number is also a quest. Of course, we have very good contracts, but this is not a panacea when there are not enough hotels for everyone. ”
The negativity due to the closure of Turkey and the lack of affordable alternatives in Russia undoubtedly hit the image of domestic resorts and those entrepreneurs who honestly try to establish service and offer quality services.
Alexey Kozhevnikov, vice president “Supports of Russia”, believes that the problem faced by consumers and the tourist business is sore and did not arise now. “It is connected with the management of the tourism industry, it needs a comprehensive range of legislative measures both to regulate and encourage and create favorable conditions for investment and tourism development. For example, in Turkey in 1981, a law was passed on the promotion of tourism. The result of the implementation of this law is that the country currently has one of the most competitive tourism products in the world and is among the top 5 countries – leaders in tourism, and the Russian tourism product in the current business development conditions is not even close to competing with them. What measures were taken by them: this is assistance for the investor and the entrepreneur, ranging from the creation of favorable investment conditions and taxation, the policy of increasing the prestige of the industry and attracting personnel, and ending with the banal subsidizing of pool heating outside the tourist season from the state.
We do not have this at the state level yet, unfortunately, as well as a full-fledged dialogue with the tourism industry. There is a stick but no gingerbread. In addition, we still have a large share of the illegal sector. Therefore, the ratio “price – quality” is. There are, of course, those who clearly inflate prices for their services, but whether they will withstand the competition when the borders are opened is a big question that will be decided clearly not in their favor, ”says Aleksey Kozhevnikov.
Roman Yeremyan, director Center for Strategic Analysis and Development of the Union of Tourism and Hospitality, for its part, notes: “The gap in price and quality between Russian and foreign supply will backfire after the end of the pandemic. After in 2021, prices at resorts have risen by 30-35% by 2020, it will be difficult for Russians to convince Russians that “houses are better”. ” He is also confident that the clumsy decisions “we will close the borders and domestic tourism will flourish” do not work.
Tourism infrastructure is not built in a year or even two years, and no investor will build based on the “demand for closed borders”, because today they are closed, tomorrow they are open, and with open borders in our tax and credit system, any attempts to build something comparable to popular foreign competitors in Russia obviously leads to losses. Without a change in the regulation of investment regimes, no national projects and subsidies will help here.