BY TIM HEDGLEY, GROUP TRAVEL EDITOR
John Galligan Travel (JGT.ie), Dublin’s longest-serving tour operator of packages from Ireland to Russia has cancelled all tours to Russia amid the Ukraine crisis, including their most popular short breaks to St Petersburg and Moscow as well as the “Highlights of Russia” holiday.
Earlier this week, JGT advised its Russian suppliers that all tours planned for the foreseeable future have been cancelled citing that while they admire the Russian people and strive to separate business and politics, the crisis between Russia and Ukraine is no longer able to be ignored.
John Galligan, M.D. of JGT.ie stated, “Over the years, we have come to know and have a high regard for the Russian people. It is unfortunate that this decision had to be made since we have a long-standing history with Russia.
“Since the start of our tours, we have successfully separated our travel agency from politics but we feel that this invasion cannot be ignored.”
He added, “We know the Russian government will not be the slightest bit worried about JGT cancelling its Irish programme.
“However, we feel obliged to register our protest at the murder and mayhem the Russian government has unleashed on the innocent people of Ukraine.
“Our protest may be small and insignificant, but if everyone around the world makes similar tiny gestures, Russia will definitely start feeling the pinch.”
“Russia has a cultural wealth that we, in the west, have difficulty understanding until we go there. In what other city would you do a sightseeing tour of the underground stations? But they are beautiful and well worth a visit. Ballerinas in the Bolshoi get paid a pittance, yet they are superstars in their country, so their wealth is cultural – it’s not all about money.”
John Galligan Travel (JGT.ie) is a small independent leisure travel company specialising in upmarket leisure, upmarket cruising, expeditions and own brand “Bucket List” trips.
They have been offering weekly departures to Russia since the 1980’s. John Galligan Travel is a member of the Irish Travel Agents Association.
See the Russian programme at https://www.jgt.ie/package/russia/