In the first quarter of 2017, after a significant decline last year, the tour operators are noting a recovery of demand for Benelux countries.
According to official statistics, in 2016 Netherlands was visited by 176,891 Russian citizens, which is two thousand less than in 2015. Belgium last year was visited by only 70,806 Russians. The popularity of Luxembourg is more difficult to measure - it is not in the statistics of Rostourism.
In 2016, on this direction the tour operators registered a 20% decline in sales, which was connected with difficult economic situation and the high Euro-to-Ruble exchange rate, as well as with a number of terrorist attacks in the region.
In 2016 the tour operators also paid attention to the strong trend, while the tourists were choosing the budget variants of accommodation and short length of the rest.
In 2017, the situation looks much better - say the market participants. The Benelux countries, experts say, attract tourists by a high level of security, comfortable accommodation, a variety of sightseeing programs and – which is most importantly - adequate prices.
So, according to the Head of the department of France, Switzerland and Benelux countries of BSI Group tour operator Natalia Brodskaya, the demand for Benelux this year is exactly twice higher than in the last year, which, according to the expert, is connected with the general trend of increasing popularity of tourist trips to Europe.
Olga Yukhnik, the Head of the European department of the tour operator "VEDI TURGRUPP", confirms this data. According to her information, the number of bookings to Benelux countries in 2017 has increased more than 100% against the same period of 2016.
The specialists of the “Russian Express” tour operator say about the growth of the direction, emphasizing that this year the sales of tours to Benelux countries began early, just after the January holidays.
In general, in Benelux countries the Russian tourists choose the excursion (60%) and business tourism (40%). In the first case, the variants of combined group tours are very popular among tourists.
At the same time, experts say, Amsterdam takes up to 90% of bookings, the remaining 10% are distributed among the other cities, for example - the Hague, Rotterdam and others. The most popular hotels are 3-4 stars hotels in the city center.