Our marketing trip to Russia at the end of September went very well. As we expected, there was an almost desperate requirement for any sort of information as to what was available in this country. The Russian monied classes have travelled most of the known world and are now looking for fringe and unusual destinations. They spend more than other travellers, enjoy luxury and seek deep experiences. This still sounds to us like one of the target markets identified by Tourism New Zealand in one of their strategies. The continued insistence that Russia is "off strategy" while high volume low yield markets like China receive priority treatment continues to mystify us.
Our stand was very busy indeed and we left Moscow having set up a representative office, redesigned our Russian website based on feedback and market requirements, and promising to set up visits to New Zealand by state broadcaster "Rossiya" and the Russian edition of National Geographic Traveller. Our separate Russian newsletter also addresses Russian issues.
All in all we believe this was a very promising start and expect to leverage a fair amount of business on very little investment. Thanks again to our lodge partners for their support. They have received prime billing in all our Russian documentation.