Kazakhstan has lifted visa requirements for citizens of the European Union, OECD countries and a number of other states as part of efforts to boost investment and tourism.
The measure adopted earlier by neighboring Uzbekistan comes as Kazakhstan as Central Asia’s largest economy has been battered by low oil prices and financial distress in neighboring Russia.
According to Kazakhstan’s foreign ministry, since the beginning of 2017, citizens of EU and OECD countries, as well as Malaysia, Monaco, the United Arab Emirates and Singapore, could travel to Kazakhstan for up to 30 days without a visa.
In a statement, the ministry said the initiative was meant to promote an even more favorable investment climate and develop the country’s tourism potential.
The move will open up additional opportunities to the business community for cooperation with the outside world and facilitate international contacts in different spheres, the statement said.
Kazakhstan’s landscape is dotted with mountains, lakes and desert, and the glitzy capital Astana is home to futuristic architecture.
Back in December, neighboring Uzbekistan announced plans to roll back its highly restrictive tourism regime by canceling visa requirements for 15 countries.
In addition, Budapest Airport has announced further expansion of its destination map, filling the white spot that was Kazakhstan.
Confirming a twice-weekly service to Astana, Wizz Air will be linking the two capital cities from 8 June, utilizing the carrier’s fleet of 180-seat A320s on the 3,742 kilometer sector.
As Kazakhstan becomes Budapest’s 45th country market, the Central Asian operation means Wizz Air will now offer flights to 29 countries from its home-base.
As the world’s youngest capital city, Astana can now be reached from Budapest in less than five hours as the ultra-low-cost-carrier’s (ULCC) direct link omits the previous need for connections via Istanbul, Prague or Minsk.
Facing no direct competition on the airport pair, the ULCC’s new Kazakhstan connection joins the Hungarian gateway’s existing links in the region to Georgia, Ukraine and Azerbaijan.
Filling another gap on our route map is proof of our continued commitment to be able to offer our passengers an ever-expanding selection of great destinations, comments Balazs Bogats, Head of Airline Development, Budapest Airport.
Wizz Air’s confirmation of Thursday and Sunday flights is perfect for a long weekend break for Hungarian and Kazakh travelers alike,adds Bogats.