Hotels available in Ukraine, says Euro 2012 boss

Ukraine’s Euro 2012 tournament director Markiyan Lubkivskyi insists hotels are still available in the country at affordable prices.

This summer will be the first time the Eastern European nation has hosted the tournament, which it will do so alongside Poland from June 8.

Both nations have overcome a series of problems in their preparations, although issues remain over the price of accommodation in Ukraine with some hoteliers looking to take advantage of the unprecedented number of visitors.

UEFA president Michel Platini accused these hotel owners of being “bandits and crooks” earlier in the month, but Lubkivskyi insists this issue is being overcome.

“I think president Michel Platini was too emotional,” he said.

“This was only in terms to push these hoteliers, not to say that Ukraine is a bad country.

“We don’t have any big risks, you can’t find bandits or mafia walking on the streets.

“But, from the other side, his message was very clear as he asked Ukrainian hotel owners to go down in price and I think it will work.

“This was maybe our biggest problem in the last two or three months, but we have also solved this problem.

“If supporters go to one of our recommended Ukrainian websites they will find hotels, even in Donetsk.

“We tried to do our best, we tried to find the best solutions for this.

“For instance, if a supporter cannot find accommodation in Donetsk they can find it in Kiev, which is only an hour’s flight and can then come back after the match.

“This is one of the solutions that every day we are looking to overcome.”

Despite reasonably-priced rooms on websites such as www.accom2012.com – run by UEFA’s official accommodation agency TUI – fans are still being quoted huge sums by some elsewhere.

Given an example of one Kiev hostel advertising a twin room for £700 a night, Lubkivskyi said: “It has been our biggest problem.

“We have told hoteliers several times not to run with high prices because in this case people will not come.

“We stopped this by speaking to hoteliers and now the price is not going up.

“There are still high prices but I believe they will go down in coming months.

“We tried to do our best, we spoke to them as we can’t use any administrative mechanism – we have to push them.”

Lubkivskyi admitted time is of the essence with less than two months remaining, although he is pleased with preparations.

“It cost us a lot in terms of enormous pressure that UEFA put on Ukraine, but I am really happy to say that today we are on track,” he said.

“We managed to overcome a lot of problems, a lot of huge issues related to financing, related to time pressures and the readiness of all infrastructure objects.

“For example, new airports with terminals, runways, aprons, taxiways have all been constructed in the last two and a half years.

“We still have to finalise mostly operational parts of preparations but we will do that in the coming two months.”


More in this Section

This guy had the worst fantasy football week you could possibly imagine

Everton board backing me - for now, says Ronald Koeman

Donald Trump accuses NFL players of showing US 'total disrespect' in kneeling row

Denmark Women's World Cup qualifier cancelled amid pay dispute


Today's Stories

What’s next for champions Cork City and John Caulfield?

Ireland must buck trend to enjoy home comforts against Denmark

What’s next for champions Cork City and John Caulfield?

Clash of cultures: The alternative Ireland-Denmark confrontations

Lifestyle

Remembering the dead: Poignant reason behind Cork’s Zombie Walk

Eight events around Ireland to check out for some frightful fun this Halloween

Massacre at mass on Scariff Island

Ask Audrey: 'It’s like I’m in a horror movie called Revenge of the Norries'

More From The Irish Examiner