Péter Faragó, CEO of Hungarian Tourism Ltd., said on Thursday during a press conference at the Travel 2016 exhibition that a new direct flight between Moscow and Hévíz-Balaton Airport will be put in operation.  The plane will accommodate 126 people, and will have 18 flights as a starter, which might result in 15,000 Russian overnight stays, turizmusonline.hu writes.

The Hungarian Tourism Ltd. and the Hévíz Tourism Destination Management Association (TDME) has been working together with the local municipality, hotels, and travel agencies since last September, when a marketing campaign was launched in Moscow to make Hévíz more attractive in the eyes of Russian tourists. The campaign’s initial cost was 28 million HUF, and later another 20 million HUF was added.

In 2015 195,000 tourists have visited Hévíz from 46 countries and the majority of them, 103,000, was from Hungary. They were followed by Austrian and German tourists, while Russians were the 4th most frequent visitors. Although Hungary was one of the two European countries in 2014 where the number of Russian tourists roughly stayed the same, as a result of the Russian-Ukrainian crisis the number of Russian visitors drastically decreased throughout Europe, including Hungary.

Gábor Papp, mayor of Hévíz, said that the city would like to have more international tourists, and they are currently working on making the city more attractive in the eyes of the visitors, primarily with the help of health tourism services. Russian tourists have an important role, because they usually stay for weeks to take advantage of the best services and become healthier, thanks to the city’s thermal water.

Between 2010 and 2014, the number of overnight stays spent by Russians in Hungary increased by 181%, and Russia is one of the countries which, according to the Hungarian Tourism Ltd.’s 2015-2017 marketing strategy, has extremely high market potential.

Igor Sevastyanov, representative of the Embassy of the Russian Federation, said that Hungary has always been, still is, and will be the favourite place of Russian tourists, and this direct flight will definitely bring more visitors, who always have a great time in the country.

The Russian UTAir will launch the flights that will initially run between 10 July 2016 and 6 November 2016.

Copy editor: bm

Source: turizmusonline.hu

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