May 12, 2014 Russian Channel One produced a news item about people resting in Crimea on May holidays. “Crimea experienced the first inrush of tourists. On May holidays the resorts of the peninsula were packed to capacity”, is reported in the news item.
This information does not reflect the actual situation. On May holidays Crimean hotels, rental apartments etc. were not fully packed.
The newspaper “Capital” informs with the reference to Deputy Minister of Health Resorts and Tourism of the Crimean Republic Olha Burova that about 100 thousand tourists visited the peninsula from May 1 to May 10. In comparison with the same period of the last year, it is less by 50 thousand.
A co-owner of the local agency “Real estate of Crimea” Ihor Zakharchenko adds that the demand for rental apartments has subsided in May even more – by 70% compared with the same period of the last year. “Tourists have come to the sanatoria as they can’t manage without treatment”, he says. Former Minister of Health Resorts and Tourism of Crimea Oleksandr Liyev stated that some Russians refused to go on vacation to the peninsula even free of charge.
As reported by the newspaper “Capital”, an entire ticket was introduced in order to transport Russian citizens to Crimea. Thus, Russians have to travel by train to Anapa or Krasnodar, then by bus to Port Kavkaz, after that by ferry to Kerch and at last by bus to the destination. According to JSC Russian Railways about 6 thousand entire tickets were sold from April 28 to May 12. However, ferry line turned out to be not ready for such a workload, which resulted in oversized queues.
In peak periods tourists were waiting for 3-5 days to be ferried. “Some could not stand it any longer and turned back”, admits the head of Crimean Mini-hotels Association Valentyna Marnopolska. Oleksandr Liyev adds that many vacationers did not feel themselves in safety on the peninsula.
The full workload of the Crimean hotels was refuted by the representatives of Russian travel agencies as well. The director of the company “Dolphin” Sergey Romashkin told the TRN magazine that tourists had gone to Crimea on May holidays, but at that moment sales volume amounted approximately to the quarter of the last year’s one. “Sales of travel tours to the peninsula started too late, and we can’t make up for the loss quickly. But, I believe, we will be able to reach the point of the last year in June”, said the director of “Dolphin”.
Crimea manager of the operator “Astravel” Yeliena Obriezkova thinks that on May holidays the demand for Crimean resorts turned out to be much lesser that expected. “Rooms in hotels and heath resorts are being booked more actively for the end of May and for June. Booking pattern reaches as far as October”, she informed.