Iran and Russia have decided to ease visa process for their citizens as the first step toward abolishing visa requirements for their travelers.
The relation between the two countries has always been in a stable condition but it improved much when Mr. Vladimir Putin came to Iran in 2015 after eight years.
Russia has always been one of the popular destinations for Iranian travelers for visit or for education and it is more popular now since the visa process has become shorter.
The number of Iranian citizens who traveled to Russia in 2015 increased by 50% and this occurrence made Russia to consider taking part in The Ninth Tehran International Tourism Exhibition on February 2016. “Figures indicate that the number of Iranian tourists visiting Russia increased significantly last year. This has made Russian firms to view Iran as a high potential provider of tourists. Some times ago, Russia set up an information office in Tehran, which will be highly effective in facilitating and arranging visits of citizens of both countries.” said Yulia A. Mokhova, acting director of Visit Russia tour operator company on her interview with Iran Daily News.
Also Alexander Novak the energy minister of Russia said the number of flights between Iran and Russia must increase from five to nine flights per week.
The first months of 2016 started with an increase in number of requests from Russian travelers for visiting Iran. Iran Doostan Tours Company (IDT) has been represented Iran at the Moscow International Travel & Tourism Exhibition (MIT) for a number of years now. At MIT 2016 the marketing team of (IDT) did see a noticeable increase in enthusiasm about Iran among the Russian visitors. “There was absolutely an upsurge in requesting tour packages to Iran from Russia this year. All Iranian tour operators at MIT received a good amount of visitors at their stand compare to previous years.” said Abbas Vaghefi, the Marketing Executive at IDT central office, who attended the MIT 2016.
Iran and Russia are both huge countries with substantial numbers of tourism attractions which makes them wonderful travel spots for their citizens.
Because of diplomatic issues between Russia and Turkey and Kremlin banning of package holidays to Turkey, the Russian travelers need an alternative destination in the region and Iran is trying to become the one. Abbas Vaghefi believes that at this critical time Iran’s government and tour operators must provide the proper ground and design new products made according to Russian traveler’s taste so Iran will have a good chance in becoming the replacement for Turkey.
Since Iran’s government has decided to attract 20 million tourists a year by the year 2025, they must consider developing the proper tour products for Russian travelers. Russian people like warmer places for their vacation and Iran has plenty of sunny and warm locations such as Qeshm and Kish islands in Persian Gulf and the beautiful Iranian deserts where the travelers can spend their holidays in. Also as a part of the tourist attraction plan Iran Cultural Heritage, Handcrafts and Tourism Organization is going to open an office in Russia, and other countries, to promote Iran attractions and tour packages in that country.