There are large numbers of people seeking their exit from Russia – not least of which are military-age men. But there aren’t many people looking to fly into Russia right now. Planes are full in one direction, and empty the other.
With sanctions and closed airspace, the scope of international air service to and from Russia is mostly limited to flights with Azerbaijan, Armenia, Belarus, Kyrgyzstan, the UAE, Tajikistan, Turkey and Uzbekistan. For instance,
- Temporarily-suspended SkyTeam member Aeroflot is flying routes like Sochi to Istanbul, Dubai, Yerevan plus Krasnoyarsk to Almaty, Bishkek.
- Suspended oneworld member S7 airlines for its part operates service like once-weekly flights Bukhara, Uzbekistan to Moscow and to Novosibirsk on board Boeing 737-800s.
Here a passenger films himself traveling alone with a child on board an S7 flight to Russia. Normally traveling alone on a plane carries a whole different connotation, creating a special feeling of finally private with the crew looking after no one but you. This video is different entirely – much more post-apocalyptic.
летим в Россию. pic.twitter.com/KPYfJLjRfC
— Kaloy Akhilgov (@akaloy) September 27, 2022
Skift publisher Rafat Ali comments that “no one is having a worst World Tourism Day today than…Russia” though liberal commentator Josh Marshall suggests that isn’t quite the case.
what do you mean, hundreds of thousands of russians have apparently become tourists just in the last few days.
— Josh Marshall (@joshtpm) September 27, 2022
Marshall isn’t wrong – just look at all the outbound tourism by people who have hit the roads.
#Russia Border checkpoint in Verkhny Lars, #Georgia. A kilometers-long line on the border with Georgia. Drivers are waiting for 40-50 hours.
The FSB confirmed the reports that the Russian military is moving to the border checkpoint. pic.twitter.com/dkComq2CSF
— Hanna Liubakova (@HannaLiubakova) September 26, 2022