“Nowadays the experts are noting a robust growth in demand by about 10% for winter holidays in all destinations,” the executive director of ATOR, Maya Lomidze said. Data from ATOR Analytical Service allows us to talk about the increased demand for winter destinations. Totally, the growth in demand for winter tours in all areas (domestic and outbound) currently exceeds by 10–15% the last year’s indicators. However, the depth of sales in this winter season is significantly lower than in the past due to the difficult economic situation. Tourists are forced to plan their holidays already “during the season”. The early booking program of winter destinations showed less demand than last season, so a more complete picture of the demand for winter tours will be clear following the results of November. According to ATOR, now Thailand is leading in the sales structure of winter tours. It is expected, that by the end of the year the tourist flow will recover at the pre-crisis level, when 1.7 million tourists from Russia visited the country. Flight programs to Thailand this year increased in volume compared to last year. Currently the tourists from 28 cities of Russia can fly to this country. After Russia on the third position in the structure of winter sales of tours is the United Arab Emirates, which, due to visa-free regime, became more popular among Russian travelers. By the end of this year, a tourist flow from Russia to the United Arab Emirates could increase by 15% on a year-on-year basis. Among all Emirates Dubai is traditionally the leader in demand. This season there are some interesting news on the destination - for example, this year Coral Travel operator has launched charters to the Emirate of Abu Dhabi. Vietnam is closely following after the UAE. In this country tour operators are waiting for an increase in organized tourist traffic up to 20% compared to last year. Phu Quoc Island in Vietnam is the star of this season’s demand, where two of the largest tour operators have already launched their charters. The fifth position, according to preliminary estimates, is shared between winter Turkey and Caribbean destinations - primarily the Dominican Republic, as well as Cuba, and “charter novelties” of this year - Mexico and Jamaica. Andorra, Austria and Italy are the leaders among the foreign ski destinations in this winter season.
Yury Mishchenko, graduated from Moscow Institute of Foreign Languages, has more than 15 years experience in tourism and travel. Working both in tour operator company as destination manager, and in travel agency as sales manager, he is focused on analysis of Russian tour operators’ daily routine. Recently, Yury works in Baginet Marketing and Sales Agency.