Turkish Airlines announced launch of flights from Istanbul to Sochi this summer season. Flights to Sochi will be three times a week.
Only 3 airlines have direct flights to Sochi — Russia’s largest summer resort, from Saint-Petersburg — Russia’s second largest city, a home to over 4.5 million people… in the middle of the summer season. One of them flies with a stop in Krasnodar (that adds several hrs to your travel time), and another one of the three only flies 4 times a week.
Compare this to 12 (!) airlines (that I know of, there could be more) that have direct flights between Sochi and Moscow.
Many other cities have it worse than St. Petes, there either no flights, or flights only a couple of days a week. There’s no competition, and because it’s the middle of the vacationing season there are no special deals. This makes Sochi one very expensive destination to fly to.
Consider this: s Saint-Petersburg – Sochi round trip flight in the first half of August with convenient weekdays (weekends) and departure times on “Russia Airlines” – the only one that has direct, non-stop flights daily – costs 548,00 EUR ! And this is with 5% off for buying tickets online already calc’ed in.
At the same time there are plenty tours (which include travel, accommodation, and, often, food) offered to Egypt, Turkey, Bulgaria, and resorts in other countries for approximately the same price or even lower… while I couldn’t find anything similar for Sochi, or any other resort on Russia’s south.
And comparing these prices to the deals available on inter-European flights from low-cost European airlines, all this drives me crazy.
Past summer I was asked about direct flights between Sochi and Dubai, as I wrote about ’em before. I knew there are direct flights, but I couldn’t find any info about it at that point in time, even on the official «Aeroflot-Don»’s website, which operates this route. That was strange to me, since I’ve read many times that AD has regular direct flights, and my close friend brags about going there every year. I did ask my friend about the flight, I told him that I can’t find any info about it, but he said it exists and we can call right now to find out the details. Sitting at the beach in burning sun on a beautiful September day we didn’t, but when couple of weeks ago he told me they’re going to OAE again, I figured I gotta find out what’s the deal is.
Turns out these flight are only regular during winter season. This also includes flights to Istanbul, Turkey, and Gyumri, Armenia. And the information about them is now available on «Aeroflot-Don»’s website (Russian only).
Sochi (Russia) — Dubai (OAE)
Flights period: 28.10.2008 – 24.03.2009
Once a week, every Tuesday.
Sochi (Russia) — Istanbul (Turkey)
Flights period: 27.10.2008 – 27.03.2009
Monday, Wednesday, Friday
Sochi (Russia) — Gyumri (Armenia)
Flights period: 20.11 – 25.12.2008, 08.01 – 26.03.2009
Once a week, every Thursday.
So, there it is. Apparently there are no direct flights to these cities from Sochi during summer.
And as a reminder, Australian Airlines operates regular direct flights between Sochi and Vienna.
Hey guys! I’m sorry i haven’t written anything in a while, but there is a little change in my life — after thirteen years living in the USA I’m back in Russia giving it a try :-) Unfortunately I’m not in Sochi, as it’s tough to find an IT job there. I’m in Saint-Petersburg. And I’m a lot closer to Sochi now, plan to visit it more often, and for sure will keep this blog going!
I did go to Sochi a month ago, and you can find some photos from my trip on my Flickr account. Unfortunately, I forgot my notes on what I wanted to blog about in NY. I’ll try to remember, though, at least about the Investment Forum and how it’s organization affected people there.
Couple of hours ago, though, there was a little scare here in Russia when news agencies reported SkyExpress flight from Sochi to Moscow was being seized by unknown person, and that he demands for the plane to turn to Vienna, Austria. However, the flight safely landed in Vnukovo airport in Moscow, and the person who tried to “seize” the plane was arrested. Turns out the person who started the whole thing is a 30+ yrs old man who was released from psychiatric hospital, where he spent last six years, several hours prior to boarding the plane. On the plane he passed a written note with his demands and a bomb threat to the pilot via flight attendant. It’s all over now, though.
Oh, btw, good news for those of you who are in Moscow right now, or plans to be there real soon — SkyExpress has a good deal on Moscow-Sochi flights right now. Check it out on their website »
Anyways, now back to the happy stuff :-) Below are some of the photos from my trip. You can see the rest of them here: photos of Sochi – 12 pages + 8 pages from my friend’s wedding in Sochi which includes many photos outside.
Russian page of Austrian Airlines lists special price for roundtrip direct flighs to Sochi — 13.655 RUB which is around 370€. This doesn’t include taxes and other fees, so you should check with Austrian on the details. The announced prices are valid through the end of July.
Here’s the link to announcement (in Russian).
Sochi News April 22nd, 2008
A year ago, around the time International Olympic Committee’s visit to Sochi, several direct flights from Austria were launched to Sochi mostly to “impress” the IOC members. Now, when Sochi has become an official 2014 Olympic host city, Austrian Airlines launched regular direct flights from Vienna to Sochi.
The schedule Vienna-Sochi-Vienna:
|Mon., Wed., Fri.||OS615 Vienna 22.30 h||Sochi 03.30 h (+1)|
|Tue., Thu., Sat.||OS616 Sochi 05.10 h||Vienna 06.25 h|
Russia, Sochi News July 28th, 2007
S7, also known as «Sibir» Airlines, will start operation of St.-Petersburg — Sochi flights for the first time. Three and a half hours flights will operate every day starting September 17 with starting price of $145 (3700 rub); «Sibir» also offers lower cost tickets online – web-price for these flights will start at $80 (1990 rub).
Another flight, Novosibirsk – Samara – Sochi will start operating on September 19th and will also be a daily flight. These flights will start at $225 (5700 rub) one way.
«Dexter» Airlines will also start operating flights to Sochi, as well as several other southern cities, from Rostov and Krasnodar. «Dexter» is Russia’s first airline to offer “on-demand” flights. With prices “by kilometer” and park of Swiss-made Pilatus PC-12 and Russian-made M-101T airplanes, «Dexter» offers on-demand and regular flights from Business and VIP terminals, with registration times under 15 minutes. Prices for flights to Sochi will be $0.6-1 per kilometer for regular flights, and $4-5/ km for on-demand flights.