As previously reported , from July 1, Turkmen Airlines will again begin operating flights to Turkmenistan from Moscow on the Ashgabat-Moscow-Turkmenbashi route twice a week.
On Tuesdays, the flight will depart Ashgabat at 19:25 and land in Moscow at 21:15. The flight will arrive at Turkmenbashi International Airport at 4:15. On Thursdays, departure from Ashgabat is scheduled at 7:35, landing in Moscow at 9:25. The flight will also arrive at Turkmenbashi International Airport at 4:15.
However, it is difficult to buy flight tickets. How to do this, tells the Association of Tour Operators of Russia (ATOR). According to her, it will not be possible to buy a ticket on the airline's website. So far, this can only be done through the general agent of the carrier, his contacts are listed on the official website of Turkmenistan Airlines.
An ATOR correspondent called the company and found out the algorithm for purchasing tickets, which turned out to be not so simple. To get started, those who want to get on the flight must send their passport details to the agent’s email (listed on the carrier’s website), indicate the flight route (from Moscow or from Kazan ) and phone number.
In a response letter from the agent, you receive details for paying for the ticket. You can pay by bank or card online.
However, keep in mind that you will have to wait at least a few weeks for departure.
“The lines are huge. Now registration for tickets is closed for 2-3 weeks in advance. The main part of the queue is the citizens of Turkmenistan,” the company that sells tickets for Turkmenistan Airlines flights said.
Since the spring of 2020, Turkmenistan has canceled all regular international flights and closed the borders even for its own citizens who remained abroad and cannot return to their homeland. Periodically, "Turkmenistan Airlines" carry out export flights, but they are clearly not enough to evacuate everyone home.
As for the prices for direct flights from Moscow, they are currently unknown. It is likely that the fares will be slightly lower than those currently in force for flights from Kazan. The latter are at the level of 26,400 rubles one way.
As for the Russians who want to get to Turkmenistan, they are more likely to not even reach the stage of buying tickets .
“Before the “quest” with tickets, you also need to emerge victorious from the puzzle game called “get a visa to Turkmenistan.” To do this is very difficult, almost impossible. Prior to the pandemic, visas were denied in more than 90% of cases. Moreover, it was simply impossible to predict the result. In the visa issue, everything was decided by fate ,” writes ATOR.
It is visa difficulties that experts call the main factor preventing tourists from Russia from traveling to Turkmenistan. There are relatively few such tourists, but there is still interest in this country, and it would increase if the process of obtaining a visa was at least a little more loyal. The country can surprise tourists with lakes, mountains, deserts, the Caspian Sea, as well as excavations of the ancient city of Merv in Central Asia.
“Now, against the backdrop of the complexity of foreign travel, Turkmenistan has a great chance to express itself and attract tourists from Russia. And it would be great if this Central Asian country would meet the needs of Russian tourists by lifting the existing restrictions,” sums up ATOR.
Earlier, Russian travel agencies reported that a guest in Turkmenistan would never be shown the life of ordinary citizens, which, “to put it mildly, does not shine with prosperity,” the newspaper notes.
“Unfortunately, this is not a myth, but a reality: an ordinary citizen of Turkmenistan has so little money and so many prohibitions that a guest will not see him on the streets of the capital,” the MK newspaper wrote. - At first it even seems that the city is not real, but an interactive presentation for curious tourists. Among the white marble palaces, only a select few walk - women in long national dresses, men in suits in any heat.
Source: Chronicles of Turkmenistan