On July 8, entrepreneurs of the Vladimir region held a meeting at the Golden Ring, in which Suzdal hoteliers talked about the difficult situation the new anti-coronavirus restrictions put them in. Recall that since July 12 all cultural, sports and entertainment institutions, including cafes, swimming pools, museums, cinemas and discos will be required to accept clients only if they have a certificate of vaccination or PCR test made not more than three days ago. The same measures will be in force in hotels since July 15.
The general director of hotel “Kremlevsky” and “Trapeznaya” Marianna Lobanova noted that Suzdal is mainly visited by guests from Moscow, St. Petersburg, Nizhni Novgorod and other cities. Tourists come for one or two nights and it’s not profitable for them to spend money on PCR tests, so the preference is given to private individuals.
“The new regulations have already resulted in more than 50 percent of all reservations being cancelled. Not only that, but some planned events, big holidays are completely cancelled due to the fact that it is impossible to hold mass events. Plus, people are just afraid that in addition to the fare, for the settlement, they have to provide certificates of PCR. A family of four people comes, which means that they have to spend at least eight thousand rubles extra for this certificate in order to stay one night in a hotel. Naturally, this is a burden that people are not willing to bear. Consequently, there are cancellations.
This leads to official businesses working half-heartedly and gray businesses starting to operate. Last year during the pandemic, when all catering points, hotels, all officially operating enterprises were closed, this gray scheme became more active in Suzdal. They rented out houses, garages, apartments, dachas, I think even dog kennels – absolutely everything. Everyone was making money, while we were sitting and waiting for some kind of easing,” Lobanova said.
It will not be possible to solve the problem of last year’s losses with the help of loans provided by the state at 3%. Money has to be paid back and to do this, you have to earn it. Many people have chosen the transition to work in the food industry. Lobanova added that the hotel business complied with all orders of Rospotrebnadzor to prevent the spread of COVID-19, but the introduction of certificates harms the business much more seriously. While official organizations are idle, “the neighbor’s grandmother will have three cars with Moscow license plates”.
Suzdal entrepreneur Svetlana Markova urged to introduce competent measures, like in Moscow, and not to close all at once in the season. Hoteliers have to return money to tourists, who have booked rooms, due to the cancellation of a number of events and restrictions.
“It’s understandable that the trouble is terrible, it’s understandable that we need to take precautions. So let’s do it with brains, with intelligence. Not so that – pop! – and “Come on, guys, let’s do it ourselves. I really want to be heard by the authorities,” Markova said.