Time in Yerevan: 11:07:36,   13 August 2022

Number of tourists visiting Armenia grows – Mekhak Apresyan

Number of tourists visiting Armenia grows – Mekhak Apresyan

YEREVAN, JUNE 28, ARMENPRESS. Tourism sector in Armenia is gradually recovering after a certain decline connected with the COVID-19 pandemic and the 2020 war, President of the Armenian Tourism Federation Mekhak Apresyan said in an interview to Armenpress.

The number of incoming tourists has reached around 250,000 in the first quarter of 2022, which, according to Apresyan, is 2,9 times more than the figure of the same period of the previous year. “But, unfortunately, it is less compared to the first quarter of 2020 because, as you know, the pandemic has not started yet that time”, he said.

Every place in Armenia is interesting for foreign visitors. Apresyan says the most difficult question is that which direction is the most attractive for them.

He says that each province and community has its attractions, and all tourists spending their vacations in Armenia are aware of this. “Packages are formed based on the purpose of the visit to Armenia, as well as based on their taste and expectations”, he notes.

Mekhak Apresyan says that most of the tourists visiting Armenia are individuals, as the group tourism has not totally resumed yet. There are no group visits from Europe, Japan, China, US, etc. “There is still caution connected with the instable situation in the region”.

As for the Russia-Ukraine relations, he said that many Russians visited Armenia in early March, but not for tourism purposes. “Due to the Ukraine crises, nearly 115,000 visits have been registered from Russia, 4000-5000 from Ukraine and Belarus. The active season starts in mid-March. The visitors are mostly Iranians who prefer to celebrate their New Year in our country”, he said.

Now there are visits from Russia for tourism purposes.

“The Russian Ruble was stabilized, but in early March it depreciated, the tickets were quite expensive and were not favorable for tourism purposes”, he said.

Commenting on the question that many Russian and Ukrainian tourists complain over the high prices of renting an apartment in Armenia, Mekhak Apresyan said the prices of apartments for daily rent have not increased much.

“Apartments were mainly provided for daily rent, but when you multiply the daily rent by a month, you see that the amount is the same. Before the Ukrainian crisis, the price of apartments for daily rent in our country has been at least 10,000 drams. As the demand rose, there was a situation when they were removing locals living for a rent, and were increasing the prices. But this had no connection with tourism, the demand increased, and the people were ready to pay”, he said.  

As for the marketing policy required for tourism development, Mekhak Apresyan said many important systematic measures need to be taken today such as reforms, personnel policy.

“Armenia’s legislation should be in accordance with today’s challenges and developments, should meet today’s conditions. It is necessary to improve the border passing procedures”, he says.

He called the mechanism existing before the pandemic good, as Armenia had a visa-free regime for more than 60 countries of the world.

“For the other countries the visa was also very simple, people were able to easily obtain it online. However, restrictions were imposed because of coronavirus, and these mechanisms started operating in a limited way, but now the opportunity of resuming them is being discussed”, the President of the Armenian Tourism Federation said.  


Reporting by Liana Sargsyan  


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