Ukrainian officials are hoping a
low-cost airfare deal will put pressure on hotels to reduce
rates for this year's Euro 2012 championships after European football's governing body raised fears about overpricing, local
media reported on Friday.
Ukraine and Poland will co-host the June 8-July 1
championships and some Ukrainian hotels have introduced 10-fold
price hikes in the anticipation of an influx of relatively
well-off foreign supporters.
UEFA president Michel Platini blasted local "bandits and
swindlers" on a visit to Ukraine last week, claiming that such
increases were unacceptable and could deter fans from visiting
the former Soviet republic.
President Viktor Yanukovich ordered his government to
resolve the issue this month and various state bodies have
started reporting back with their findings.
Boris Kolesnikov, Deputy Prime Minister in charge of
preparations for the finals, told reporters in the eastern city
of Donetsk that the government would promote low-cost air travel
to put pressure on hotels to reduce rates.
"We are finalising an agreement with Ryanair on its
entry to the Ukrainian market and all fans will be able to
compare the cost of flying in for every game with the cost of
staying in Ukraine," Shakhtar Donetsk football club quoted him
as saying on its website on Thursday.
Kolesnikov said three return flights from London to Donetsk
for each of England's group games in Ukraine would cost a total
"I think this will cool the ardour of our hotels," he said.
Another official, Ukrainian Euro 2012 director Markian
Lubkivsky, said there were thousands of rooms available to fans
at all price levels.
"There are one, two and three-star hotels available to fans
as well as university campuses and resorts," Ukrainian news
website Zavtra quoted him as saying on Friday.
"We are ready to accommodate all fans."
Separately, Ukraine's state anti-trust committee said it was
investigating hotel pricing at tournament venues in Kiev,
Donetsk, Kharkiv and Lviv, Kommersant-Ukraine newspaper reported
The cheapest Lviv hotel listed on UEFA's championship
website for the Germany-Portugal match on June 9 charges 195
euros per night. For the Ukraine-Sweden match on June 11
in Kiev, offers start at 104 euros.
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