Tourists from BRIC countries, like Brazil, India and South Africa, could enjoy visa-free travel to Russia, according to President Vladimir Putin.
As far as international tourism goes, the competition to attract travellers is really high these days. Russia has so far been lagging behind but Putin hopes to turn that all around and attract more travellers to book flights to Moscow. In a State Council meeting last week, Putin said,
“Liberalising the visa regime almost always leads to an increase in tourist inflows and it’s worth considering an extension of visa-free travel already enjoyed by tour groups from China to other BRICS countries.”
He also pointed out that tourism in Israel doubled after they abolished tourist visas and tourism in Turkey grew by 41%. It seems like a very easy way to boost tourism in a country that desperately needs an economic push. The ruble has fallen 45% against the US dollar over the past year, making it one of the worst-performing currencies in the world.
Tourism from the EU fell drastically in the first quarter after tensions with Russia ran high during the conflict with Ukraine. Russians hit had by the recession also skipped travelling in order to save money.
Putin previously was pushing for visa-free travel with Europe but has now decided to concentrate on the BRICS group of countries which include Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa.