News

28 Apr, 2021
 
New tourist center in Samarkand will be put into operation in 2022.

 

The complex is being built on an area of 212 hectares on the coast of the rowing canal. According to the project, there will be 10 facilities, including a congress hall, hotels and recreation areas. Now the construction of the congress hall, the “Eternal City” caravanserai and 8 hotels is underway. Two 22-storey hotels will be of five-star, the rest are four-star.

 

The center, which is now under construction, will become a tourist hub. There will also be the necessary conditions for holding international events. The center is scheduled to be put into service in 2022.

 

Despite the large number of hotels in Samarkand, there is a shortage of accommodation during the peak of tourist season. This situation was observed, for example, in 2019, when all hotels in the city were fully loaded. At the same time, the great opportunities created by the state for the development of tourism, the introduction of a visa-free regime for citizens of about 90 countries stimulate further growth in the flow of incoming tourists.

 

 
Along with the construction of a new tourist center, the reconstruction of Samarkand International Airport is in full swing. It is scheduled to be put into operation on September 1, 2021.

 

The airport will be transferred to the management of Air Marakanda, which will invest 80 million US dollars into the project.

 

The project includes building of a new passenger terminal, runway, parking area for 26 aircrafts and other facilities. Up to now, the construction of a runway with a length of 3105 m and a width of 60 m has been completed; now light-signaling and aeronautical equipment is being installed on it.

 

It is expected that the new terminal will have a modern design and be able to serve 800 passengers per hour (or up to 1.5 million passengers per year). The airport's previous capacity was 400 passengers.

 

Air Marakanda, together with specialists from Munich (Germany) and Istanbul (Turkey) international airports, is currently working on the implementation of the ORAT (Operational Readiness, Activation and Transition) program - a methodology for operational readiness, commissioning and transfer of operations to new infrastructure. Among the company's tasks are the development of the route network, the modernization of the airport, the introduction of new technologies and others.

 

The company also plans to bring in an international expert to manage the aerodrome, terminal and ground handling coordination.

 

In addition, it is expected to resume regular flights with operating airlines (Uzbekistan Airways, Turkish Airlines, Aeroflot, Nord Wind, Red Wings, S7 Airlines, Ural Airlines, UTair, Rossiya) and attract new ones (Asiana Airlines, Lufthansa, Air Astana, China Southern Airlines, Yakutia, Somon Air, Kam Air, Azerbaijan Airlines, Almasria Universal Airline). A memorandum was signed with Fly Dubai, Belavia, Ukraine International Airlines and Air Cairo.

 

Air Marakanda intends to work on the development of cargo transportation and optimization of pricing policy:

 

• reduction in the cost of aviation fuel;
• formation of the price of aviation fuel on market conditions;
• reduction of the cost of services for consumers by 20-30%;
• reduction of airport rates and taxes for airlines with high frequency of flights.

 

In addition, Air Marakanda is creating its own fleet and at the start plans to purchase 3 modern passenger aircrafts and 2 helicopters with a subsequent increase in the number of flying units and expansion of the flight map. 
 
Stay well and safe! 

ABC Silk Road Tourism Ltd.
 
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26 Mar, 2021
 
Digest of travel news in Uzbekistan related to Hotels, Flights, Vaccination, Entry Regulation & Rules.
 
Hotels. 
The Grand opening of the first hotel of the world famous brand of Marriott hotels - “Courtyard by Marriott Tashkent 4*” took place in the capital of Uzbekistan. 

Courtyard by Marriott Tashkent offers 131 rooms, 5 multifunctional conference rooms, 2 “MEATme” and “Grill&Bar” restaurants, “Ugolek” terrace and 2 bars with European and national cuisine, as well as an indoor swimming pool and fitness center. More info here: hotel's web-page

 

Flights.
Turkish Airlines may launch regular flights with Urgench and Fergana International Airports. March 24, in Urgench International Airport LLC, negotiations were held between the airport management and representatives of Turkish Airlines on the launch of new flights. The director of the airport noted that large-scale work is being carried out to protect the health of tourists and guests of the country, to provide quality services to aircraft and passengers. During the talks, Turkish officials were informed about the security of the airport, runways and what types of aircraft the Urgench airport can serve. The first deputy director of the airport Mr. Ruslan Agabullaev, after listening to the appeals and questions of his Turkish colleagues, expressed the opinion that the airport is ready to provide guaranteed service for Turkish Airlines aircraft and passengers on the next flight, and answered their questions. Both sides listened to each other, and Turkish officials expressed their proposals for an early signing of the agreement. From March 28, Uzbekistan Airways announced the opening of regular flights to Istanbul from the airports of Fergana and Urgench.

 

Vaccination. 
660,000 doses of WHO-approved AstraZeneca vaccines arrived in Tashkent.
Mr. Munir Mammadzade, UNICEF Representative in Uzbekistan along with the representatives of the Ministry of Health was at the airport in the early morning on March 17 to receive Uzbekistan’s first batch of Covid-19 vaccines – 660,000 doses of WHO-approved AstraZeneca vaccines. The vaccines were transferred to a cold chain facility in Tashkent City built with the support of GAVI and UNICEF.
Ambassadors from the US, UK, Japan, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and the Head of the EU delegation all expressed their satisfaction at having had the opportunity to contribute to the effort and highlighted the hard work that went into procuring these vaccines. Representatives of UNICEF, WHO and The World Bank also expressed their thanks to fellow members and donors.
In his speech Deputy Health Minister Mr. Bakhodir Yusupaliev stressed that bringing the vaccines in is one thing but making sure it is done correctly is even more important. The cold chain storage facility has a dry room full of personal protective equipment and the syringes needed to administer the doses. Two large cold storage units and a backup generator ensure that the vaccines will be kept at the correct temperature.
“This is a historic step towards our goal to ensure equitable distribution of COVID-19 vaccines globally,” said Munir Mammadzade, UNICEF Representative in Uzbekistan.“Equitable and fair access to vaccines is a key element in ending the pandemic, and we must ensure that vaccines are available for all.”
The 660,000 doses consignment is part of the COVAX allocation of 2,256,000 doses to Uzbekistan under the COVAX Facility, with the remainder being delivered in the coming few months.
Uzbekistan will start the first stage of mass vaccination against coronavirus with the AstraZeneca vaccine from April 1, an Uzbek Health official said on Wednesday.
Elderly and disabled people, employees of the healthcare and education systems, as well as members of law enforcement bodies will be vaccinated in the first place, the deputy head of sanitary and epidemiological welfare and public health service Mr. Nurmat Atabekov told the local media.
Uzbekistan is negotiating with Russia to get 1 million doses of Sputnik-V vaccine as well, he said, adding that the country will also use the vaccine developed by China’s Anhui Zhifei Longcom Biopharmaceutical Co.

 

Entry Regulation & Rules.
Uzbekistan cancels express testing for covid-19 upon arrival in the country.
A special commission made another decision, according to which a new procedure for the arrival of Uzbeks and foreign citizens to Uzbekistan is introduced from March 15.
In Uzbekistan, from March 15 of this year, the procedure for express testing for antigen to coronavirus at airports, railway stations and border points has been canceled.
This decision was made at a regular meeting of the Special Republican Commission on March 13 in order to create additional amenities for citizens arriving in the country and widely use the tourist potential.
According to the new procedure, citizens arriving by air or rail must provide a certificate with a negative result on the passage of PCR testing for coronavirus, made no earlier than 72 hours before check-in for the flight. If citizens arrive in the country by road, they must also present a certificate of passing a PCR test for coronavirus (made no earlier than 72 hours in advance) with a negative result.
In the absence of a certificate, visitors will be able to take a rapid test for antigen to COVID-19 in special clinics and laboratories at border crossings. Visitors will only be admitted to Uzbekistan with a negative result. Test results must be in English or Russian.
From March 25, citizens of foreign countries will be allowed into the country without express testing if a negative PCR test for coronavirus is obtained in laboratories that meet quality standards.
Responsible organizations have been instructed to compile and publish a list of laboratories that conduct high-quality and reliable PCR testing for coronavirus abroad. At the same time, at least 10 laboratories will be identified in each country. The test results of these medical institutions will be recognized in Uzbekistan.
The ministries, departments and embassies of Uzbekistan abroad have been instructed to inform foreign partners, investors and tour operators about the lifting of restrictions on entry into the country, about the opening of new air and rail links. 

Stay well and safe! 

ABC Silk Road Tourism Ltd.
 
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10 Mar, 2021
Digest of travel news in Uzbekistan related to Hotels, Flights, Vaccination, Entry Regulation & Rules.

 

Within past two weeks there were no considerable changes except some news about hotels in Tashkent and Samarkand.
 
Miran International Hotel and Registan Plaza started renovation of rooms. According to information of Hotels Group’s CEO, they plan to finish the works by the end of this summer. Also, they informed us that they added one more hotel to their chain in Tashkent. It is a newly built premium class hotel – Lumier Hotel & SPA. 

In Samarkand there is one more new hotel opened. Sumaya Boutique Hotel, it reminds a smaller copy of Shakhristan Hotel in Bukhara.

 

If you need the detailed presentation of these hotels we can send the file at your request by email.

Stay well and safe! 

ABC Silk Road Tourism Ltd.
 
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17 Feb, 2021
 
Digest of travel news in Uzbekistan related to Hotels, Flights, Vaccination, Entry Regulation & Rules.

 

Here in Uzbekistan the situation is very healthy which is very strange. Either it is because of the most of our population was infected somehow and we are experiencing so-called collective immunity, nor our viral strain is not that severe. Internal transport system (air, train, road) is working properly. All restaurants are open, night clubs are allowed to work until 2 o’clock at night. Cinemas and theaters are open and work without any restrictions.  

 

1. Hotels in Uzbekistan. 
Most of the hotels in Khiva are temporarily closed. Only Lokomotive Hotel in Khiva is open when needed for passengers of Uzbekistan Railways. Some of the hotels in Khiva open on weekends for local tourists. The same situation in Bukhara, most of the hotels are temporarily closed. They open during weekends for local travelers or upon request if there are visitors with government, business or other urgent purposes. In Samarkand most of the bigger hotels are open. It is due to the fact that in Samarkand there are more visitors on government, business purposes or international delegations who are obliged to travel due to international projects. In Tashkent it is the same, all 4-5* hotels are open and work properly. There are no hotels in main cities who have closed business completely, everybody is waiting for the tourist season to start.

2. All scheduled flights of HY and other air-carriers were canceled. For the moment, we have regular international connections by air with following destinations (HY): 
- New York
- Dubai
- Istanbul
- Sharjah
And within Central Asia:
- Astana
- Almaty
- Bishkek
-Dushanbe 
Apart from national air-carrier now there are flights of Fly Dubai (between Tashkent and Dubai), Turkish Airlines (between Tashkent and Istanbul). 
 
3. Uzbekistan Airways announced that from March they will restart regular flights between Tashkent and Frankfurt, expectedly once in two weeks. Also, in Spring we expect flights between Tashkent and Sharjah by a newcomer - Air Arabia. 

4. The government of Uzbekistan has set a goal by the end of the year to cover with vaccination most of the country's population, primarily citizens at risk - the elderly, those with chronic diseases, as well as workers in the spheres who are in constant contact with the population (health workers, teachers, employees of the internal affairs bodies and others). The day before, it was reported that vaccination of citizens at risk will begin in mid-March, and that Uzbekistan is negotiating the purchase of a vaccine against coronavirus with 12 leading manufacturers.
According to the announced data, in the third stage of clinical trials of the Chinese vaccine ZF-2001, 6697 volunteers received the first dose of the vaccine, and 1209 the second. Taking into account the positive results of the tests, the Ministry of Innovative Development (it coordinates the testing) proposed to the special commission to issue a permit for the emergency use of the vaccine (EUA) for its use in vaccination of the population of Uzbekistan. If the commission issues this permission, the Chinese side will supply Uzbekistan - as a partner in the development of the vaccine - with the drug at a preferential price and in sufficient quantities.
According to the deputies, the vaccine manufacturer Zhifei Longcom, in cooperation with pharmaceutical companies in Uzbekistan, is capable of producing up to 300 million doses of the vaccine this year, which will provide the country with the required amount and begin mass vaccination of the population by the end of the year.
In addition, it is reported that negotiations with the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization (GAVI) on the free supply of about 2.5 million doses of Astra-Zeneca vaccine (Oxford, UK) to Uzbekistan are nearing completion. Uzbekistan can receive the first batch of this vaccine of 800 thousand doses in March.
Today it was reported that a special commission certified and registered the Russian vaccine "Sputnik V". The Sanitary and Epidemiological Service was instructed to develop a procedure for vaccinating the population on a voluntary basis asap.
According to the national statistics in Uzbekistan from mid Dec 2020 and till today we have about 30-50 new covid cases totally. Due to low infection rates most of the covid specialized clinics are closed or reshaped into other diseases.  

5. There are no changes in visa regulations. To visit the country you need to have a negative PCR test and it is valid for 3 days. The same concerns when you leave the country. 

Stay well and safe! 

ABC Silk Road Tourism Ltd.
 
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 10 Dec, 2020
Air traffic with Europe is scheduled to resume from 2021. Tariffs must be reduced.

President of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev pointed out the need for a phased resumption from next year of air connections with European countries, Malaysia, Indonesia, Pakistan, Thailand, Japan, and launching new directions for pilgrim tourism. The President criticized the high cost of air-tickets for Uzbekistan Airways flights and set a task to reduce prices.
 
On December 9, President of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev held a video conference on the ongoing work in the field of tourism, as well as tasks for the coming year, the press service of the head of state informed.

The meeting critically reviewed measures to restore and develop the country's tourism potential, taking into account the need to revise approaches in the context of the coronavirus pandemic.

In 2021, it is planned to attract 1.7 million foreign tourists. The most promising source in this regard is, first of all, cultural and pilgrimage tourism. There are many Muslim shrines, monuments of Judaism and Buddhism in Uzbekistan. Taking advantage of this opportunity, the country can attract 700 thousand pilgrims, the message says.

In this regard, it was pointed out the need for a phased resumption from next year of air traffic with European countries, Malaysia, Indonesia, Pakistan, Thailand, Japan, and launching new directions for tourism. The high cost of tickets for flights of the national air-carrier (Uzbekistan Airways) was criticized, the task was set to reduce prices.

The head of state noted the lack of work to promote pilgrim tourism and a scientific approach. He noted the importance of further promoting the country's tourism potential in conjunction with the embassies abroad. A proposal was put forward to simplify the visa system for citizens of states in which pilgrimage tours to Uzbekistan are highly popular.

To coordinate activities in this direction, an Interdepartmental Commission will be created, headed by the Deputy Prime Minister. The Commission will systematically deal with the organization of flights, simplification of obtaining permits, expanding the geography of flights and improving airport services.

Stay well and safe! 

ABC Silk Road Tourism Ltd.
 
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30 Sep, 2020
 
UZBEKISTAN CANCELS RESTRICTIONS ON INTERNATIONAL TOURISM
 
In connection with the opening of Uzbekistan’s borders, from 1 October all restrictions on international tourism are cancelled. Foreign tourists will be able to visit the country in groups.
 
Uzbekistan lifts restrictions related to the organization of international tourism, follows from the decision of the Special Republican Commission on COVID-19.
 
On the eve, it was announced that from October the 1st, the country will open its borders and lift the ban on entry and exit by air, rail and road transport in compliance with quarantine and sanitary and hygienic rules.
 
Tour operators, when organizing trips for groups (from 5 to 15 PAX with insurance, which covers the treatment of various diseases, including COVID-19), must provide groups' PCR test in advance. All tourists will be required to perform a PCR test no longer than 72 hours before arrival into the country and present the negative results to both the airline prior to flights, and customs upon landing. The PCR test must be in English or Russian.
 
Tourists with a negative PCR test result will not be obliged to undergo 14-day quarantine and tested for coronavirus when entering Uzbekistan.
 
"Foreign tourists must strictly observe all quarantine and sanitary and hygienic requirements established in Uzbekistan," the decision says. Tour operators are responsible for ensuring that these requirements are met.

Stay well and safe! 

ABC Silk Road Tourism Ltd.
 
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19 August, 2020

The world has changed since the beginning of the pandemic, with wide-ranging consequences that include new travel restrictions, health risks, and borders closing making it more challenging to go to places we once wanted to visit. So, the question that follows is this: Do we believe in the fast recovery of traveling? We do think that the spirit of adventure and exploration will revive, but a decision to book a trip has obviously grown more complicated. It will only become more perplexed in the days ahead.

Every traveler is different; what is crucial for us is that you make informed decisions that minimize the risk for you and your community. All of us observe that people have different approaches to handle the situation and how it is changing the world around us. And we understand that it may take time for group tourism to reach a pre-pandemic level. We think that pioneers will be the ones who travel individually or in small groups of friends or families. 

For such a sensitive category of travelers, we would like to offer a unique product.  In addition to the "post COVID travel protocol" that we have developed (for more details please visit http://abc-tourism.uz/post-covid19-protocol), we are working on a product putting safety first and exploiting social distancing wherever possible. We engage private homeowners whose properties satisfy the rigorous requirement to be a home away from home for FIT or a small group in every city of Uzbekistan. We consider delivering food from the best restaurant, dining outdoor, or indoor in private rooms. We develop itineraries to visit monuments and museums during less-crowded hours, extend the list of night visits, and many more.

Whatever decision people make about booking a trip now, it's important to remember that travel is also a state of mind, and that you don't necessarily have to go far away to feel far away. And no matter what we are doing right now, we shouldn't forget about the next big trip, because when the time comes, when the answers are clearer, and the future is brighter, travel will be what will help us to start moving forward again.

 
 Stay well and safe! 

ABC Silk Road Tourism Ltd.
 
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21 July, 2020
 
Dear colleagues, 
 
From the 1st of September 2020 Uzbekistan Airways is planning to resume regular fights between Italy and Uzbekistan. 

The flights will be operated once a week from Rome (FCO) and Milan (MXP) as follows:
-TUESDAY HY-258 FCO-TAS (20:45-05:45+1)
-TUESDAY HY-257 TAS-UGC-FCO (13:45-15:05; 16:15-19:15)

- FRIDAY HY-256 MXP-TAS (20:45-05:55+1)
- FRIDAY HY-257 TAS-UGC-MXP (13:35-14:55; 16:05-19:15)

According to this schedule the most suggested itinerary will be FCO/MXP - TAS - SKD - BHK - UGC - FCO/MXP.

Stay well and safe! 

ABC Silk Road Tourism Ltd.
 
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14 July, 2020
Dear colleagues, 
 
Turkish Airlines is planning to resume flights between Uzbekistan and Turkey in August. The air-carrier announced that at the same time it will open sky with Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Saudi Arabia, India, South Africa and UAE.
"We are happy to offer you the opportunity to travel, because we know how difficult it is to plan trips at this time". - says the company.

Stay well and safe! 

ABC Silk Road Tourism Ltd.
 
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23 June, 2020
Dear colleagues, 
 
Additional to the document about the system of sanitary and epidemiological safety "Uzbekistan. Safe travel guaranteed." our government introduced the following. In case of infection with coronavirus in Uzbekistan, a foreign tourist whose travel is organized by local tour operator will receive compensation of 3,000 USD.

It assures that Uzbekistan is tackling the issue of safe post-covid travels seriously. 
 
Stay well and safe! 

ABC Silk Road Tourism Ltd.
 

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17 June, 2020
 
Dear colleagues, 
 
From 18May Uzbekistan Airways and Railways companies started domestic operations strictly within the country. After about a month, on 15 June Uzbekistan Airways started to reopen its international flights as well. For the moment, destinations where the national air-carrier flies are divided into three zones, green, yellow and red and list of allowed passengers are regulated as follows:
 

► Diplomats and their families.
► Specialists of foreign companies and other organizations operating in the framework of investment projects.
► Persons coming for treatment.
► Persons with close relatives or seriously ill relatives abroad.
► Persons transported in transit at the request of diplomatic organizations.
► Foreigners permanently registered in Uzbekistan, permanently residing in Uzbekistan, as well as citizens of Uzbekistan permanently registered in a foreign state.
► To continue their studies and work for citizens of Uzbekistan.
 
Passengers from green zones can fly without any special regulations on sanitary control and isolation, these countries are Japan, South Korea, China, Israel. 
Passengers arriving from yellow zones should be placed in domestic quarantine upon arrival for 14 days so far, they are EU citizens, Malaysia, Thailand and Singapore. 
Red zone passengers after arrival will be accommodated in special quarantine places upon arrival for 14 days, they are UAE, Turkey, Iran, Afghanistan, Russia and other CIS countries. 

The government updates sanitary control measures and  list of zoned destinations every two weeks. We will keep you informed about them.
 
 Stay well and safe! 

ABC Silk Road Tourism Ltd. 

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10 June, 2020
 
Dear colleagues, 

After a 3-month quarantine, Uzbekistan, which had a low number of COVID-19 patients, is slowly opening up. This week public transportation started operating in most of the cities, non-essential businesses, non-essential construction, commercial buildings were allowed to open. Beginning June 15, restaurants, kindergartens, summer camps, hotels, gyms, and swimming pools will start operation with some limitations. 

We are planning to return to our office at the beginning of July to resume full operations. Until a proven vaccine is available, we will provide ALL our clients with masks, hand sanitizers, and gloves free of charge. All our guides, drivers, and vendors (hotel and restaurant staff) will be obligated to wear masks and gloves when interacting with customers. 

We, as a company, are proud that all our employees kept their jobs at the company, and despite isolation, we all feel united and ready for action. 

Stay well and safe! 

ABC Silk Road Tourism Ltd. 
 

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