In the context of steadily growing international tourism, the purpose of TopRail is to reduce the lack of visibility of railway tourism products and to encourage collaboration between stakeholders (railway operators, associations, institutions, railway associations, customers…).
The main tourism market is as follows:
- Tourism products: cruise trains
- Trains running in scenic areas
- Trains linking tourist destinations
- Heritage trains
The benefits of this project would be the:
- Promotion of UIC members’ products both among themselves and towards the general public
- Dissemination of best practices and the assessment of their potential portability
- Stimulation of regional development as a result of collaboration and promotion activities
- Use of existing infrastructure to its full potential
- Improvement of rail’s global image
The expected results of this project are the following:
- Design and creation of a promotional website as a platform which facilitates establishing business contact between potential cooperation partners
- Produce some studies relevant for the members
- Set up workshops and worldwide conference about tourism and railway services
- Raising an international top rail awareness to reward best practices and quality projects
The meeting in Moscow was focused on Russian interest on the project TopRail.
UIC was represented by Mr Marc Guigon, Senior Advisor Passenger Transport.
Russian railways were represented by Ms Ekaterina Kozyreva, Head of Department of External relationship in Directorate of Russian Stations, Ms Ekaterina Aivazova, Department of International Cooperation of RZD, Mr Alexey A. Averin, Advisor to the RZD President, Mr Artashes Kirakosyan, Head of Department for Tourist Products within the Federal Passenger Company, Mr Aleksandr Lvov, Deputy General Manager of Russian Railway Tours, Mr Oleg Pirozhkov, Specialist Corporate Clients in Russian Railway Tours.
The Mayor of Moscow was represented by Mr Vladimir Lebedev, Advisor to the Mayor of Moscow.
All participants were very interested in the TopRail project, mainly concerning:
- Electronic catalogue for tourism rail products
- The development of Russian projects: destination Moscow (Museums, red place, Bolshoi, Metro…), Trains to Eastern Asia which have a great potential for tourism in Russia
- Homologation of rolling stock in several countries and negotiations with infrastructure managers to get paths
- Attraction of railway enthusiasts all around the globe
RZD will organise an internal meeting concerning the TopRail cooperation.