Russia is experiencing a sports tourism boom as soccer fans flood in to support their teams competing in the Football World Cup. According to the latest figures from ForwardKeys, which predicts future travel patterns by analysing 17 million booking transactions a day, flight bookings for arrival in Russia for the FIFA World Cup (4th June – 15th July) are currently 50.5% ahead of where they were at this point last year. In addition, many Russians are staying at home for the tournament and are not going on holiday as usual. Outbound bookings from Russia are 12.4% behind.
A notable feature of the booking profile is that the current upsurge has its peak around the opening matches and, as of now, there is a limited advancement in bookings after the group stages of the tournament. However, once the outcome of the group stages become clear, a subsequent surge in bookings is possible for the latter knockout rounds, as fans come back to support their teams.
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