West indian countries

Seychelles: Moscow gives green light to resume flights to 52 countries – Russia remains Seychelles’ top tourism market in Q1

Russia is set to resume flight connectivity with 52 countries, including Seychelles, as the country lifts restrictions put in place to combat the COVID-19 pandemic.

Meanwhile, Russia remains Seychelles’ top tourism market for the first quarter of 2022.

According to TASS, Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin announced on Monday that from April 9, Russia is lifting restrictions set to combat the coronavirus pandemic. This applies to scheduled and charter flights between Russia and a number of other countries.

“Now we are resuming flights with 52 countries, including Argentina, India, China, South Africa and other friendly states,” Mishustin said.

The Russian Embassy in Seychelles told SNA on Friday that “Seychelles was actually among the very first countries with which Russia resumed flight connectivity when the borders started to open gradually after the lockdown of the pandemic”.

“The inclusion of Seychelles in the recently expanded list of countries to which no travel restrictions apply confirms once again that the archipelago maintains its position as a safe destination. Regarding direct flights, Aeroflot is working on a plan to resume them in the near future,” the embassy said.

Russia remains the first tourist market

According to figures released by the National Bureau of Statistics on April 7, Russians remained the most numerous visitors to Seychelles for the first quarter of the year, following a record year in 2021, when Russia was the number one tourist market for Seychelles, contributing 32,000 of the country’s total of 182,849 visitors.

This year, of 77,655 visitors to Seychelles, a group of 115 islands in the western Indian Ocean, from January to March, 12,174 – representing 16% of total arrivals – came from Russia. France was the second largest market with 11,109 arrivals, representing 14% of total visitor arrivals for this period.

In addition, Aeroflot announced that it will resume flights to certain countries located in Africa, the Middle East and Asia. Some Latin American countries in North and South America were also on the list.

Russia’s national airline canceled flights to Seychelles on March 9 after the airline issued a press release stating that all international flights, except those with Minsk in Belarus, would be temporarily suspended from 8 March.

Despite sanctions imposed on Russia by Western and European countries due to its ongoing war with Ukraine, airlines such as Emirates, Qatar Airways, Etihad Airways and Sri Lankan Airlines, among others, have continued to operate flights to this Eastern European country.

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