In the past, Russians who want to enjoy a holiday would travel to Italy, France, Spain, Cyprus and Greece without any hassle. These days, it’s impossible to get to these destinations if you hold a Russian passport. Many airlines including American Airlines no longer fly to Russia.
The European Union recently agreed to suspend a travel agreement with Moscow making it very expensive and tedious for Russians to travel to EU. In addition, EU airspace is closed to Russian airlines. Russia’s war against Ukraine has led to a lot of consequences including travel restrictions to many popular travel destinations.
That does not mean however that Russians are just staying in the country. There are still several leisure destinations that they can go to including:
- United Arab Emirates
In 2019, Turkey was the top destination for Russian holidaymakers in 2019, followed by UAE and Maldives.
Wealthy Russians prefer the Maldives where they can bask in the sun all day surrounded by crystal clear blue waters, jacuzzi, pools and beachfront accommodations.
In February and March, travel went down to zero, with the exception of business trips and family visits. By May, affluent Russians started traveling again as people started getting used to the reality of war. High end hotels in Turkey were soon booked out, along with Maldives resorts.
Nations Bordering Russia to Implement Restrictions
Four European countries will limit people from Russia from entering by land due to concerns regarding significant increase of Russian citizens in the visa-free zones in Europe.
Beginning September 19, Poland along with Latvia, Estonia and Lithuania which border Russia have introduced a national measures for Russian citizens with EU visas. They emphasize that such measures do not mean an outright entry ban. They still make exceptions for those with residence permits, family members, humanitarian cases and dissidents.
At the most recent European Union summit, the bloc’s 27 members were divided over whether to issue a visa ban on Russians. Whilst most are in agreement that there is a need to pressure Russian President Vladimir Putin, there are also growing concerns about punishing ordinary Russians, many of whom do not support Putin’s war.
In May, the EU tightened visa restrictions on Russian politicians, officials and businesspeople. France and Germany are pushing for tighter restrictions on Russian visas instead of implementing an outright ban.
Air travel from Russia has already been banned by the EU however Russian passport holders can still travel to Estonia by land and then take a flight to other destinations in Europe.
Watch more about travel restrictions for Russian citizens here: