“There will be direct flights, but we don’t know the dates yet,” he said. As Ekaterina Lopukhina, marketing manager, clarified, the issue of organizing direct flights is constantly being worked out. “We really hope that it will be as soon as possible,” she said.
Now from Russia to Korea can be reached by transit flights through Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Turkey.
The host party is also interested in expanding the possibilities for financial settlements of Russian tourists using the cards of Russian banks. Now in Korea, cards of some Russian banks are accepted in some hotels and shops, but not everywhere. Therefore, as in other countries, for traveling to Korea, experts recommend stocking up with a foreign bank card or cash. “Of course, we want the situation in this area to improve as well. We hope that everything will return to maximum convenience for our tourists,” said Ekaterina Lopukhina.
According to her, they are trying to create comfortable conditions for tourists in Korea. Tour operators are provided with information about discounts, offer coupons for shopping, tickets for concerts, which are also included in the tour program. The Korean Ministry of Tourism and Sports also allocates subsidies through which tourists can receive discounts. This practice is valid, in particular, for thematic groups, for example, on culinary tourism, sports tourism or dedicated to the “Korean wave” – that is, modern Korean music or cinema.
The National Tourism Organization of Korea predicts that the tourist flow from Russia by the end of this year will amount to 55 thousand visits, almost 70% more than last year. Before the pandemic, the flow of tourists to Korea was more than 340 thousand visits.
Now, after the abolition of anti-COVID restrictions, the tourist flow is starting to recover. All quarantine restrictions have been lifted, PCR tests are not required. Before the trip, you need to obtain an electronic entry permit – K-ETA, it is better to start preparing documents in advance. The cost of K-ETA is 10 thousand won (about 500 rubles at the current exchange rate).
In Korea, tourists are attracted by a variety of types of tourism. There are beach resorts, excursion programs, sports tourism, medical tourism are popular. In winter, Korea offers about a dozen ski resorts with a developed transport and service infrastructure. In addition to classic spas, there are Korean public baths – chimchilbans, one of the favorite pastimes of local residents. Many ski resorts also have hot spring water parks.
For Russian tourists, the Korean ski destination is relatively new, but, according to representatives of the host country, it has great growth prospects due to the great popularity of Korean culture in Russia and interest in the Korean tourist destination.
All ski resorts are close to various tourist attractions. Therefore, it is possible to combine active tourism with an excursion program and acquaintance with the national color, cuisine, and nature.