Dear Partners,

2022 finally looks like the year when Russians will start to travel freely again, there are no restrictions from the Russian government concerning international travel.  80 countries have already recognised the Sputnik V vaccine and it is expected that WHO will recognise it in February-March 2022 which will then open the gateway for recognition by the European Medical Agency. Flights are in place, even before leisure travel is allowed to most European travel destinations and many more have programmed flights from May onwards in anticipation of the borders being fully open to the EU by April-May as long as tourists are vaccinated.
Russians who are always hungry to travel are currently travelling extensively to destinations that are open including Egypt, now the new number one winter destination for Russians, as well as Turkey, the UAE, the Maldives, the Seychelles and Sri Lanka which are all seeing extremely positive booking numbers. As Russians are generally less fearful of international travel we expect that trend to continue well into 2022. 
The main barriers to travel are currently the pending recognition of Sputnik, a potential pending conflict with Ukraine and the rapidly emerging Omicron variant which is just starting to impact Russia, after a delayed entry compared to other European countries.

Helene Lloyd

21 January 2022, Moscow

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