An increase in the allowed period of visa-free stay in Belarus would boost the popularity of local health resorts, Gennady Bolbatovsky, the director of the Belarusian national center of health resort treatment and recuperation, told a press conference on 6 April.
Gennady Bolbatovsky noted that the number of foreign nationals who take advantage of the opportunity to visit Belarus visa-free and spend a weekend at a local health resort is on the rise. The tourists give preference to the centers located in the vicinity of the capital city, in Grodno Oblast or Brest Oblast. If a decision is made to increase the allowed period of visa-free stay in Belarus, this will boost the popularity of the Belarusian health resorts, Gennady Bolbatovsky noted. He explained that health improvement programs are usually designed to run for 14 to 18 days.
In recent years, experts have been observing a steady demand for the services of Belarusian health resorts from foreigners not only in summer, but also in between the high seasons. According to the latest data, in Q1 2017 the number of foreign health tourists went up by 2,000 as against the same period a year earlier. The revenues from services not included in the health resort vouchers rose by 26%.
Almost every week, Belarusian health resorts introduce new services based on state-of-the-art medical technologies. The focus is placed on the use of natural healing factors. “If we do not offer new services, this will affect the development of our health resorts and their competitiveness,” Gennady Bolbatovsky emphasized.
He added that special attention should be paid to foreign language training of the staff. In light of the diversification of the market of health resort services, the need to improve their provision comes to the fore. The personnel of Belarusian health resorts will undergo training in Q2 2017, including language training.
In Belarus, there are 324 certified health resorts and health improvement centers with a total of 67,400 beds. The number includes 113 health resorts with a capacity of 28,900 beds and 211 health improvement centers with 38,500 beds.