Israel is Awaiting Huge Wave of Russian Tourists

Israel Materials 21 September 2008 12:38 (UTC +04:00)

Israel, Jerusalem, 21 September/ Trend , corr A. Gut/ The cancellation of visa regime between Russia and Israel from 20 September on will double wave of tourists from Russia. The number of Russian tourists may reach 400,000 in 2010, according to forecast of Ofis Turs turism agency.

Nearly 193,000 tourists traveled to Israel in 2007 which is 2.5 times more than the previous figures. Nearly 170,000 Russian tourists traveled to Israel for the first seven months of 2008 with a rise of 22% as compared to the same period of 2007, Kalkalist economic paper reported.

The agreement on non-visa regime between Russia and Israel came into effect on 20 September. First "non-visa" aircraft of Transaero airway company landed from Moscow airport to an airport in Israel after Ben Gurion with a slight delay at midnight.

Russian citizens are no longer required to apply embassy for visa for private and tourist tours to Israel. They can stay in Israeli territory for 90 days in every 6 months. Russian citizens can also leave for Israel and leave Israel and use it as a transit.

However, the final decision on permission for travel is made by border services and other competent agencies regardless of visa or non-visa regime. Foreign passport, medical insurance, document on hotel reservation, travel voucher, invitation and document on paying capacity are required to be submitted instead of visa. If the aim of traveling is medical treatment, letter from the doctor must be introduced.

Tourist organizations in Eilat (tourism capital of Israel) are awaiting the wave of tourists from Russia. The posters are being prepared in Russian, menus, programs of entertainment events and others materials are being translated, Shabtai Shai, director general of Association of Hotels of the city said.