Where do Transcarpathians go to rest in the summer?
Vacation in Cyprus this year is expensive, and Greece asks many documents
Summer is a holiday season. Some go to the Carpathians or to domestic seasides, others look for foreign exotic. Today we talk about summer trips, their cost, trends, innovations with the director of Uzhgorod travel agency "Lux Tour" Inna Hoys.
Ms Ina, so which beach resorts are most in demand now?
- Bulgaria and Turkey. Last year, it was Greece. But now this country requires even more documents from tourists. For ordinary Transcarpathians, it is difficult to get them.
You mentioned Bulgaria and Turkey. What do they attract tourists with?
- Availability and good service. For example, to go to Bulgaria, you only need a travel passport, a photo and an application form, which we fill out with tourists. The visa costs 35 euros. Bulgaria now offers resorts for every taste.
As for Turkey, there are many tours to this destination. Those are Antalya, Marmaris (Aegean Coast). Departures are usually from Lviv, and very reasonable prices. For those, who cannot tolerate heat, it is better to go there in late summer - early autumn.
And what is the cost of vouchers now?
- Currently, the lowest prices are for vacations in Bulgaria. But, until the middle of the season, it is not going be too cheap even there. Now and to the end of June, you can have holidays in Bulgaria (7 days in a nice hotel with breakfast) at 2300 UAH per person. Travelling to Bulgaria is 1625 UAH both ways, plus insurance - about 60 UAH. So, a package price is 3985 UAH.
Do you have tours to exotic destinations?
- Of course. But exotic is more popular in winter. Because, for example, in Sri Lanka, the summer is a rainy season. Vietnam, Thailand are winter destinations too. But the flight there is 800-1000 euros. Everything else is very cheap, even accommodation. While in Cyprus, there is a beautiful sea, but this year, vacation there is very expensive.
What about European countries?
- Many people are interested in Spain (Costa Brava, Mallorca). But when we tell them that the flight is from Kyiv, they say, some other time. Italy is a little less popular. Although, there are good places there too. Austrian Vienna is also popular, while Budapest - not so much. There are also tours from the Czech Republic, but mostly from Lviv. Prague, Telc, Kutna Hora also attract tourists.
On June 23, consulates introduced biometric Schengen visas. I don't think it will create any problems for travel agents.
- This is not a problem. Especially for Uzhgorod residents who are going to neighboring countries. Consulates are close - Slovak, Hungarian and Polish visa center. But those, who want to go to Greece, will have to go for a visa to Kyiv. Tourists do not like it.
By the way, are bus tours still popular?
- Yes, twice a week (Tuesday and Friday) you can go from Uzhgorod to Bulgaria by bus. Total distance is 1000 km, and the ticket costs 1625 UAH (there and back). It's cheaper. A tourist buys a ticket, we open a visa, and the next day you are there.
There is also a bus to Greece, but it runs once every 10 days. The distance from Uzhgorod is 1300 km (via Hungary). A trip costs 2500 UAH. However, it is important to remember that to open a Greek visa, you must book a hotel.
How often do you have to deal with dissatisfied tourists?
- Sometimes a tourist can have high expectations, and when they arrive at the place, weary from the road, everything annoys them. Typically, after the check in and eat, the opinion changes. There were instances when they phoned the next day and apologized saying that everything was fine. Also photos of the hotel, that you see on the web, sometimes do not show all the nuances. Therefore, every season we go in promotional tours, often several times: we examine hotels, taste the food, learn the specifics of a resort in order to provide tourists the most accurate information about the trip and offer the holiday that they want.
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