Suspension of visaless regime with Turkey not critical for Russian tourism — ATOR
The decision to suspend the visaless regime with Turkey is not critical for the Russian tour industry, the executive director of the Association of Tour Operators of Russia, Maya Lomidze, has told TASS. "As far as outbound tourism is concerned, this decision is not critical at all. Tours are not being sold at the moment. It’s an off-season there," Lomidze said. After the Turkish Air Force shot down a Russian Sukhoi-24 frontline bomber over Syria on November 24, the Russian Foreign Ministry advised Russians to refrain from travelling to that country. The tourist agency Rosturizm on the same day advised Russian tour operators to stop selling Turkish itineraries. "For inbound tourism the suspension of the visaless regime is not critical, because its flow from Turkey was insignificant," Lomidze said. Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said Russia was suspending visaless trips between Russia and Turkey as of January 1, 2016 after Friday’s talks with his Syrian counterpart Walid Muallem.