MOSCOW (QHA) -

The organization’s representatives claim ‘they are seeing a significant increase in the number of tourists buying tours to Crimea through their travel agency."

The thing is, it comes cheaper to buy tours from operators than bear all the costs involved in doing it yourself. Charter flights can also help cut the cost of a plane travel, and thus the whole package. This can save tourists from RUB 2,000 to RUB 3,500 per person including accommodation in a 3-star hotel.

According to Ilya Umansky, Head of the Inland Tourism Committee, being unable to travel to Turkey and Egypt, Russian tourists have been switching to tourist destinations within the country.

“The holiday resorts are almost fully booked, with Crimea and Sochi being the most popular destinations,” TASS quotes Umansky as saying.

In his turn, ‘Minister for Resorts and Tourism of Crimea’ Sergei Strelbitsky claims there should be more hotels and inns in Crimea.

“We have three times fewer hotels than Russia’s Krasnodar region. There should be more of them, but it will happen no sooner than 2017-2018. Investors are already putting money in modernizing the hotels,” Sergei Strelbitsky said, referring to three- and four-star hotels - the most popular ones in Crimea.

According to Strelbitsky, Crimea has more chances of becoming a popular tourist destination than Russia’s Kuban.

“Tickets to holiday resorts in Crimea’s eastern and western coast cost 15-20% less than those in Kuban. If we manage to keep prices this low, we will almost certainly succeed and things will be OK,”he said.

Low-priced tours to Crimea got bought up in mid-spring, the most popular destinations being Yalta, Sevastopol and Yevpatoria.

It was reported earlier that up to 6 million tourists visited Crimea in 2007-2011 on an annual basis. Following the 2014 annexation, the number of tourists fell dramatically. Even the occupation authorities admit that it fell by 30%. In 2015, 1.7 million people visited Crimea. Based on the May holidays numbers, 1.5 to 1.7 million people are projected to visit Crimea this summer.

QHA