For many people, tourism nowadays is an inextricable part of their lives. This is a perspective sphere, which year after year is becoming more popular. September 27 is the World Tourism Day. In 2014, ISTiS Tour small innovative enterprise was created at South Ural State University. Within several years of the enterprise’s existence, employees of the travel agency organised tours for more than 6 thousand clients. Director of the ISTiS-Tour, Tatiana Nazaykina, told us about tourism sphere condition and the company’s development.
Photo: Director of the ISTiS-Tour, Tatiana Nazaykina
— How was the ISTiS-Tour Company created?
— The idea belonged to Vadim Erlikh, the Director of SUSU’s Institute of Sport, Tourism and Service. The company was created in 2014, first of all, as a venue for students’ internship. In May of 2015, ISTiS-Tour started active operation, after our team had been formed. All employees have significant experience; each of them have been working in tourism for more than 10 years.
Vadim Erlikh offered me to head this agency as a director and I got interested in the project’s novelty. It was interesting to work with students, as one of my first degrees is related to pedagogy. I want to share my experience with the younger generation.
— What is the specificity of your travel agency?
— ISTiS-Tour is not just a travel agency; it is a small innovative enterprise, one of the co-founders of which is South Ural State University. In its essence, this is the only agency in the city, which has a legal entity among its founders. This means a guaranty of safety for our clients and our competitive advantage. This is because many people value reliability. Among our clients are students and university staff who arrange their business trips with our help.
Each year, students undertake internships at ISTiS-Tour. Teaching staff of the university provide them with a good theoretical background, so our goal is to teach them the systems of booking, cooperation with travel companies, as well as introduce them to various legal nuances, specificities of visa policy, etc.
— What tours does the company organize?
— The company has been developing tours around Russia and more than 40 programmes for the Ural. Aside from traditional tours, say, to Turkey, we are also elaborating quite exotic offers. We have tours to Tanzania, Maldives, Philippines, Kenya, etc. For clients who prefer travelling to Europe, we organize tours that include several countries. Such tours can’t be found on websites of other travel companies; they are very non-standard and therefore more interesting for clients. We often receive positive feedback and, of course, this makes us happy.
— Nowadays, individual tours are very popular. Do you work in this direction?
— Right now, we have many applicants for individual tours for which we organize non-standard tours that presume “intelligent” travelling. This suits those who want to visit several countries within one travel. Planning of such tours is carried out individually. It includes calculation of all flights, transfers between them, and so on.
— What are your goals for the closest future?
— On a scale of the company’s development, we are now at the stage of active growth. At the moment, we are working on development of the corporative sector. When we just started working in this direction, we only had four large corporative clients; now there are more than 25 of them.
— Why is tourism important for people?
— First of all, tourism means discovering yourself. When a person living on the “home – work” pattern goes traveling, he finds himself living a new life. He gets the possibilities to make something interesting in extraordinary conditions. Naturally, this also means discovering new cultures and countries. I think that travelling is really like living another life for anyone of us.
— What is the current state of the tourism sphere? Which directions in tourism are actively developing?
— We notice active governmental policy in tourism development in Russia, and this is very good. At that, not only domestic tourism is developing; there is a serious work being done on attracting foreign tourists to our country; for that FIFA World Cup provided the most visible demonstration. I was in Saint Petersburg when the match between Russia and Egypt was held, and then I went to watch the games in Yekaterinburg. Everywhere was a lot of foreigners who had positive comments about our country and our people. So I think that with the right policy, foreign tourists will be visiting our country more actively. And this is quite perspective from the position of training future specialists who graduate from universities with degrees related to tourism and service. Nowadays in Russia, international hotels are being actively constructed, for example, Courtyard by Marriott Hotel is to open at the Sochi ski resort. Big resources get involved so that our specialists could build their careers in large companies which are constantly working on development of their human resources.