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Bring the Russians here this summer

I READ in the Irish Independent that Ireland lost 15pc of tourists in 2010, mostly from the UK. Why not take another country as an example of how to invite more tourists?

Let's look at Cyprus. As a native Russian, I know that before 2004 (when Cyprus introduced visas) a lot of Russians had holidays there.

In 2004, however, Cyprus lost approximately 90pc of Russian tourists, but there were enough UK tourists.

In 2008-2009, Cyprus lost many UK tourists because of the economic crisis. From the beginning of last year, it introduced a new procedure whereby Russians could apply for a single tourist visa online. They could then receive their visas in the airport on arrival.

As a result, more than 100,000 tourists from Russia went to Cyprus in 2010.

Why not change the rules for single tourist visas and allow online application?

Prices in Irish shops are cheaper than in Moscow. Perhaps we could invite the Russians here for the summer sales.

Victoria Galkina
Lexlip, Co Kildare

Irish Independent