Ukraine Travel Industry on Slow Recovery

The number of Ukrainians traveling abroad increased  in 2017.The number of Ukrainians traveling abroad increased  in 2017.

The effects of the war, political turbulence and economic instability have taken a heavy toll on Ukraine’s entire economy, but some sectors are already on the rebound.

And, perhaps surprisingly for a country still at war, one of those sectors is tourism.

Almost 25 million people came to Ukraine in 2013, but then the figure halved, to 12.5 million in 2014, Kyiv Post reported.

Since then, the number of people traveling to Ukraine has risen by 500,000 every year, reaching 14.5 million in 2017.

The number does not include anymore the arrivals to Crimea, Ukraine’s peninsula popular with tourists, which was annexed by Russia in 2014.

Ukrainians are not just welcoming more tourists every year, they are traveling more, too.

The number of Ukrainians traveling abroad increased in 2017, when the country was granted the visa-free travel with almost all European Union states. From 2013 to 2016, Ukrainians traveled abroad 23–25 million times a year. But in 2017, there were 28.5 million foreign trips.

But there are other factors fueling tourism abroad.

Ukrainians who used to holiday in Crimea have gone elsewhere since Russia annexed the peninsula in 2014.

Now they choose to go either to Ukrainian cities on the Black Sea, such as Odesa, Kherson and Mykolaiv, or resorts in Egypt or Turkey. From 2015 to 2017, there was a huge decline in the numbers of western tourists visiting these countries, and prices dropped to the same level as they were in Ukraine, with better service into the bargain. It is also easy for Ukrainians to enter Turkey — they do not even need an overseas passport, a domestic passport will suffice.

Add new comment

Read our comment policy before posting your viewpoints