Posted 27 июня 2023,, 06:52

Published 27 июня 2023,, 06:52

Modified 27 июня 2023,, 08:17

Updated 27 июня 2023,, 08:17

Like Europe, but cheaper. Russian tourists have discovered Belarus

Like Europe, but cheaper. Russian tourists have discovered Belarus

27 июня 2023, 06:52
Tourists from the Russian Federation are breaking records for trips to the closest foreign country for us. We are studying what to see in the Republic of Belarus and how much it costs.

In 2023, the tourist flow to Belarus reached the pre-pandemic level. According to ATOR, the number of Russians who went on vacation to the fraternal country this summer exceeded last year's figures by 30-50%. Sanatoriums are in particular demand, which, with a high quality of service, are noticeably cheaper than in Of Russia. The number of bookings of sanatoriums by Russians, according to the Association of tour operators of the Russian Federation, increased by 120% compared to last year, that is, more than twice. Similar growth in hotel bookings.

Representatives of the Belarusian tourism industry confirm that the flow of tourists from the Russian Federation has been growing recently.

«There are significantly more tourists, it is unlikely that this is due to increased interest in Belarus and its history, first of all it is due to difficulties with visiting other places and other countries, » says the organizer of the events Alexander Rak, «our guides have increased the number of Russian tourists at times».


What to watch in Belarus?


Experts interviewed by Novye Izvestia note that they go to the neighboring republic on the one hand for the European entourage, to look at medieval cities and objects, as well as for Soviet nostalgia, many objects and architecture of this period have been preserved in the country. A separate part of the visit is places related to the history of the Great Patriotic War.

«The main destinations are Minsk, castles of the World and Nesvizh, Grodno, Brest, Khatyn, Dudutki, Vitebsk, » says Elena Alinskaya, a guide to Belarus, «those who fall in love with Belarus look at other places: Polotsk, Kossovo, Ruzhany, Lida Castle and others».

In addition, you can enjoy outdoor recreation in the country. Starting from the famous «Belovezhskaya Pushcha» and ending with quiet rivers and forest lakes.

«Belarus is a European country in which the traditions and culture of Europe have been preserved, you can look at the European castles, Gothic architecture, » says Alexander Rak, «the second component is health tourism, a lot of sanatoriums, recreation centers, which provide excellent service. This area has been attracting people for a dozen years. In addition, there are cheaper ecotourism options: hiking, kayaking, etc. Separately, it is necessary to mention nostalgic tourism, much that was connected with the USSR is preserved here, and people go to see it.

The owner of the VODAR estate, the author of more than 20 routes around the country, Olga Baraulya, noted that tourists coming to Belarus can be divided into three large categories: those who buy a ready-made tour, people who go to relatives to friends, independent tourists. The latter, as a rule, have the most questions.

«The number one question after the departure of Booking is where to book accommodation», — the expert says. «In Belarus, not all hotels have got their own websites with the possibility of booking and not all have joined Russian systems like Ostrovok or Yandex Travel. Tourists often look for accommodation on local and sites. I would recommend paying attention to such a concept as „agro-estate“. In Belarus, there is such a separate type of accommodation — country houses or hotels with up to ten rooms».

The expert advises to start getting acquainted with the country from the regions and small towns, and only then it is more convenient to go to Minsk by car.

«I am in favor of people looking at Belarus as widely as possible, looking for something else besides the hyped pop places, » says Olga Baraulya, «over the past five years, a large number of castles, manors, museums have been restored. I recommend to see the Bulgakov Palace in Zhilichi, the Kosovo Castle, the Oginsky and Nemtsevich manors. Few people reach these places.»


How much does a vacation in Belarus cost


Tourists note that in general, everything in Belarus is somewhat cheaper than in In Russia, at least, than in the capitals. But this feeling is rigidly tied to the exchange rate, which is somewhat floating. At the time of this publication, 28 Russian rubles were given for one Belarusian ruble. You can pay in Belarus only in national currency, so you will have to visit exchangers, banks or ATMs. There are MIR maps in the country, as well as maps of other systems, but the latter may not work stably. In general, travelers are advised to have cash with them, but also keep in mind the possibility of paying by card. At the moment, the conversion rate in the bank may be more profitable.

  • Flights from Moscow to Minsk cost from 5-6 thousand rubles. If you catch a share, it's even cheaper.
  • A taxi from the airport to the city costs 1000-1300 rubles, Russian aggregators work.
  • One trip by metro will cost about 20 Russian rubles.
  • A night at the hotel in the «bed and breakfast» category — 2000-3500 rubles. Hostels, guest houses and private apartments are cheaper, hotels with stars are more expensive.
  • Inexpensive lunch in — from 200-300 rubles.
  • Tickets to museums and tourist facilities — 150-500 Russian rubles.
  • Guided tour — from 800-1000 rubles.

On vacation for teeth


A separate story is dental tourism to Belarus. According to experts, this direction is steadily growing. Russians are attracted on the one hand by the low price caused by the exchange rate difference, on the other by the high quality, which is due to strict state regulation of private medicine. Vladislav Androsov, head of the medical tourism operator in the Republic of Belarus Med Travel Belarus, told Novye Izvestia that over the past eight years, Russians have accounted for a significant share of the flow of foreign patients.

«Over the past six months, we have felt growth», — the expert says, «the only deterrent factor is the growth of the dollar. If it grows, then it becomes not so profitable for Russians to be treated with us. Nevertheless, we can estimate an increase in the flow of dental patients in the last quarter of about 20%. In general, this story has been going on since the 2010s. Tours have become relevant when dentistry is combined with treatment in a sanatorium. We investigated the demand, is it really only the price that affects our interest in treatment? But more than eighty percent of respondents said that they come to us because they have better quality and trust our doctors more. We really have tighter control in this area. For example, doctors who are allowed to treat patients in private clinics in our country must have worked in the state system for five years before that».

The interlocutor notes that among the clients of Belarusian clinics are often not only residents of the capitals, or Central Russia from where it is easy to get to Belarus, but also remote regions: Murmansk, Irkutsk, Kamchatka, Vladivostok. As for money, it is important to monitor the dollar exchange rate.

«If in In Russia, a dollar costs up to seventy—five rubles, that is, real savings», — the expert says, «as soon as it starts to rise above seventy—five, then when recalculated, it already turns out not in favor of the patient. As for services, people are interested not in the treatment of one tooth, but in complex implants and prosthetics of one jaw. A snapshot is sent in advance, doctors study it, and a treatment program is compiled. And then a person arrives and restores the entire jaw in five days. It costs about 230 thousand Russian rubles. It is clear that each patient may have different, but this is a guideline. Only we carry out about fifteen to twenty such operations a month».