Posted 15 августа 2023,, 08:57
Published 15 августа 2023,, 08:57
Modified 15 августа 2023,, 09:50
Updated 15 августа 2023,, 09:50
The idea of collecting additional money from tourists and other visiting guests in favor of the regional budget has definitely taken root in Of Russia. At the beginning of July, such an opportunity appeared not only in the Altai, Krasnodar and Stavropol territories, but also in St. Petersburg. Governor Alexander Beglov decided not to delay for a long time, and established a tourist fee at the maximum tariff: 100 rubles per day per person.
Starting next year, all regions of Russia will have this opportunity. From the point of view of the need to replenish deficit budgets, everything is logical: Russians have nowhere to go now. People will not refuse to travel because of several hundred rubles per family member. Especially considering that the cost of tours in Russia is already easily calculated in hundreds of thousands of rubles.
Experts confirm this: according to the vice-president of the Russian Union of Tour Operators Yuri Barzykin, the introduction of a tourist fee in the regions will not affect the tourist flow. The harsh laws of the free market: when demand exceeds supply, people can collect considerable amounts of money in excess of the usual expenses.
The regions that are increasing the tourist flow in 2023 have a particularly strong potential. According to the MTS Travel hotel booking service, people have exchanged the usual resorts, including the Crimean ones, for the Far East. For the first 7 months of 2023, the tourist flow in Primorsky Krai grew by 44%, Sakhalin — by 32%, Yakutia — by 31%, Dagestan — by 30%, Khabarovsk Krai — by 29%, North Ossetia — by 28%, Kaliningrad Region — by 27%, Kamchatka — by 26%, Amur region — 24%. And in the whole country, the tourist flow increased by 9% compared to the same period last year. People began to actively discover new directions for themselves.
Unless Chukotka did not get into the Far Eastern TOP regions. The reasons are banal: according to experts, the region is facing an acute shortage of air transportation and hospitality infrastructure. It is not easy for tourists to get outside of Anadyr.
While everyone is thinking and wondering what to do with the tourist fee, the head of the Kaliningrad region Anton Alikhanov decided to take an example from Alexander Beglov and decide to introduce a new fee as soon as possible. There is no official decree of the government of the Russian Federation yet, and Kaliningrad Minister for Culture and Tourism Andrey Ermak has already announced plans to introduce a fee at the maximum tariff from next year. Everything is the same as in the northern capital — 100 rubles per person per day.
In theory, the region can get good money: the tourist flow to the region increased by 15% in the first half of 2023, and by the end of the year it can reach 2.1 million people. If you simply multiply the number of tourists by 3-5 days they spend in Kaliningrad and its surroundings, then you can get about 840 million rubles for the improvement of cities and resorts in a year.
However, in practice, the actual fees may be several times less. As it happened in the case of the Krasnodar Territory. According to the Ministry of Resorts, Tourism and Olympic Heritage of the region, only 55% of tourists paid the fee in 2022. And based on the actual estimate of the number of arrivals in the Krasnodar Territory, only about 20% of tourists paid the resort fee.
Firstly, there is a large group of beneficiaries. The tourist fee does not have to be paid to the owners of real estate in the resort area, employees of local enterprises, disabled people of group I and II, liquidators of accidents at nuclear power plants, poor families, students under 24, tuberculosis patients, athletes and some other categories of citizens. Secondly, a considerable part of tourists stay overnight in guest houses and rented apartments, whose owners are in no hurry to disclose their financial transactions to the state. That is, they just stay in the shadow sector.
As a result, the Krasnodar Territory, with a tourist flow of 17 million people, collected only 747 million rubles last year, the Altai Territory — 54.7 million rubles, the Stavropol Territory — 294.4 million rubles. If 20% of tourists pay the fee in the Kaliningrad region next year, the region may receive up to 170 million rubles. This, of course, is not fabulous billions, but even in this scenario, this amount is comparable to the 204.2 million rubles allocated from the federal budget for the Kaliningrad region as part of the national project «Tourism and the hospitality industry».
When people have no alternatives, when domestic resorts actually have no competitors, regional authorities will be able to safely set maximum rates of fees — the people will pay for everything. And the final result will depend on the administration. The regions now have an additional incentive to push the owners of rental apartments and guest houses working in the shadows to the wall.