Russian Tourist Flow to France will Grow Thanks to Regions

Sergey Vladimirov, 14.02.2014 10:39
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France expects upwards of 1 million Russian tourists in 2014. According to the Russian office of Atout France, this can be attained thanks to the growth of the tourist flow from Russian regions – the Urals, Siberia and Southern cities.

This year France expects upwards of 1 million Russian tourists. In 2013 the country was visited by about 900 thousand Russians and by 85 million tourists in total. This information was given to the TRN correspondent by Inessa Korotkova, Director of the Russian division of Atout France, during a workshop devoted to Paris.

According to her, there are a few positive prerequisites for further growth of the Russian tourist flow. First, it is the fact that French ski resorts are becoming more and more popular among Russians. Second, Russian corporations are growing more interested in holding MICE events in France. And third, visiting France gives an opportunity to combine a few kinds of holiday-making at once – for instance mountain skiing, shopping and sightseeing.

Finally, Ms. Korotkova noted the expanding flight network: nowadays almost each and every one of Russian regions has a direct air link with French cities which are favored by tourists.

And speaking of Russian regions, they may well exhibit more active growth this year: according to the director of the Russian division of Atout France, things are going especially well in the Ural region (Yekaterinburg), Novosibirsk and in the South of Russia – Rostov and Krasnodar.

“We detect a rise in growth from the Russian regions,” she said, adding that a substantial part of the Russian tourist flow was still made up of Moscow and St. Petersburg residents.

Russians come to France mostly for culture activities, mountain skiing, wellness programs and gastronomy.

As for the popular destinations that Russians favor in France, Paris has maintained strong leadership for the past few years, then goes the French Riviera and Rhône-Alpes (ski resorts).

Nicolas Lefebvre, General Director of Paris’ Convention and Visitors Bureau, told TRN that about 300 thousand Russian tourists visited the capital of France during the past year. According to statistics, Russians spent a little more than three days per visit in Paris, which is a bit higher than the average ratio. Also, Russians spend more money in Paris than tourists from other countries.

Mr. Lefebvre underscored that the Russian market was very important for the French tourism industry, which was evidenced by the Parisian delegation: 24 French partners came to participate in St. Petersburg’s workshop.

“France is interested in the Russian clientele,” says Inessa Korotkova, and this is not an empty statement: representatives of the French travel business plan to visit a number of future workshops and business meetings in Russia. For instance, already in two weeks’ time representatives from the Châteaux of the Loire Valley will come to Russia, and later after that employees from the tourism office of Champagne will speak about new tourism products for the season.

Страны, регионы и города: France, Russia
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