[IMG=21343-7194]While tourists from Perm are enjoying the consequences of dumping provoked by excess of flights to Egypt, travel companies of Rostov – na – Donu are concerned about the risk of the same scenario. Last year only one airline – Aeroflot-Don, operated flights to Egypt from the region – two flights, to Hurgada and Sharm-el-Sheikh, once in ten days. Meanwhile, in season 2006-2007 the airline plans to operate Boeing – 737 flights to both destinations on a weekly basis starting from October 29th. Furthermore, on the same day S7 Airlines launches charter programs to Hurgada and Sharm-el-Sheikh consolidated by Riviera. Tu-154 will fly on the routes once in ten days. As a result the total air traffic to Egypt has increased by 300 seats comparing to last year.
However, at the moment the situation in the Rostov market is not problematic. Thus, Alexan Mkrtchan, Director of Pink Elephant, emphasized: ‘it is early to talk about difficulties, until November 15th all flights are fully booked. Moreover, Aeroflot-Don initiated additional flights: two to Hurgada and two to Sharm-el-Sheikh’. Meanwhile, experts believe that the current increase in demand is engendered by the coming November holidays. Besides, the local airport was closed owing the reconstruction of the runway from September 18th until October 22nd. Therefore, some tourists had to put off their holidays that resulted into the postponed demand effect. ‘In high season much air traffic volume is in demand, but at the end of November, beginning of December and the middle of January fewer flights should be operated not to provoke excess of air traffic volume’, stated Evelina Butova, Director of Olives and Pearls.
Nevertheless, local travel market players hope that the common sense will fight the ambitions that will engender optimization of air traffic if necessary. Most probably, Aeroflot-Don will have to cancel some of its flight, experts agreed. Ten-day programs and morning slots offered by S-7 Airlines are in higher demand. But the key factor is that S7 Airlines rates are around 110$ cheaper than the ones offered by Aeroflo-Don. Besides, Aeroflot-Don tickets are in free sale that means that tour operators are not obliged to buy them and bear no responsibility for the success of ticket sales.
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