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US and Canada tour operators expect resumption of travel to Uzbekistan

4 July 2020

As part of promoting a positive image of Uzbekistan and supporting tourist interest in the republic abroad, the Uzbek Embassy in the United States organized a briefing of the Deputy Chairman of the State Committee for Tourism Development Ulugbek Azamov for travel agencies in the United States and Canada.

The briefing was attended by the leaders of the leading travel companies in the USA and Canada, who specialize in organizing tours of travelers to Uzbekistan and Central Asian countries, as well as representatives of cultural and humanitarian circles and the media.

At the beginning of the event, the participants were informed about the pandemic situation in the country and the measures taken to normalize the epidemiological situation in the republic, as well as the work of the Government in preparing the entire complex of the necessary infrastructure of the country to accept foreign tourists.

The leadership of the State Committee for Tourism made a detailed presentation of the measures taken to stimulate international tourism in the context of a pandemic, the prospects for the resumption of tourist flows from the USA and Canada, the requirements and recommendations to foreign travel agencies and tourists, the conditions for ensuring the safety of tourists in the country, and also the priority directions for the future development of the domestic tourism industry of Uzbekistan .

It was emphasized that special attention is paid to government support of business entities in the field of tourism. It was noted that the main task is to prevent the closure of hotels, travel companies and other sectors of the economy related to servicing domestic and foreign travelers.

Mr. Azamov informed the briefing participants about the opening from 1 June 2020. "Green" and "yellow" regions of the country for domestic tourism, as well as the resumption of June 15 this year air connections with foreign countries with the introduction of “green”, “yellow” and “red” flights according to risk levels based on the situation with coronavirus in countries of departure.

The participants of the event showed keen interest in the measures taken to support the tourism industry in the republic and actively asked questions affecting various aspects of the resumption of tourism. High appreciation was given to measures to accelerate the restoration of the tourism sector and the formation of new instruments for its development, the privileges, preferences and incentives for the tourism business, the expansion of the Open Skies regime at Andijan, Bukhara and Urgench airports, as well as stimulating the development of tourism infrastructure.

Of particular interest was the project “Uzbekistan. Safe travel GUARANTEED”, which is a new system of sanitary and epidemiological safety for tourists, developed on the basis of world standards. It was emphasized that uniform requirements of sanitary and hygienic standards were introduced at all tourist facilities to ensure the safe stay of tourists in Uzbekistan.

Commenting on the speech of the head of the State Committee for Tourism, the Honorary Consul of Uzbekistan in the United States, Carol Lopez, drew attention to the significant increase in publications on social networks about the historical and cultural heritage of Uzbekistan. For his part, U. Azamov noted that the republic is conducting a series of targeted actions to popularize the national brand for representatives of local and foreign media and bloggers, which served as an incentive factor for increasing publications about Uzbekistan. In addition, the very fact of the development of digital media space and the multiple growth in the number of foreign tourists who have visited our country over the past 3 years is also the reason for the activation of Uzbek content on the Internet.

Representatives of the cultural and humanitarian circles of the United States expressed their willingness to strengthen friendship communities between the regions of Uzbekistan and the United States. An activist of the Uzbek diaspora in Seattle (Washington), Fazliddin Shamsiev, assured that he will do his best to expand twinning relations with Tashkent, and will also inform local tour operators about new opportunities in Uzbekistan.

The editor of the San Diego Metro magazine, Martin Cruming, expressed his interest in creating a community of friendship between representatives of San Diego (California) and residents of one of the historic cities of Uzbekistan. In his opinion, such an alliance will help strengthen the Uzbek brand in the American city and increase the number of American tourists to Uzbekistan.

Many tour operators were interested in the process of resuming flights from the USA and the introduced innovations for passengers arriving in our capital. U. Agzamov emphasized that there is ongoing monitoring of the pandemic situation throughout the world. It is noted that a special commission together with air carriers will strive to create the most favorable conditions for the resumption of safe flights. Participants are also informed about the new procedure for checking and ensuring the safety of tourists at the airport.

As a result of the event, it was agreed to continue regular consultative negotiations with a view to resuming the tourist flow to Uzbekistan from the American continent as soon as possible, organizing a special joint study tour for US and Canadian travel companies to our country as the epidemiological situation stabilizes, as well as expanding the package of proposed tourist destinations in the republic.