June 22, 2021

The Mai Tais Are Worth It



The Mai Tais Are Worth It
Ah, nothing like the brisk Baltic coast in July. Strandkorbs at Ahlbeck Beach, Wikimedia Commons

Who doesn't have wanderlust induced by COVID restrictions? We sure do, and apparently lots of Russians do, too; so much that they're taking on debt for a chance to slip away for a while.

According to a recent report in Izvestia, a record number of Russians have itchy feet thanks to being locked inside for so long. Lack of international travel isn't discouraging them, and this, coupled with what for many have been unemployed months, has led to skyrocketing demands for "vacation loans."

A surge in loans has occurred this spring – in some locales, up 160 percent from last year – and it's estimated that a quarter of borrowers plan to use the cash to relax. While the wave is a common phenomenon, this year's run is one of the largest in memory, with amounts averaging between R700,000 and R800,000 (about $9,500-11,000). That is over 40 percent higher than in previous years, with dubious repayability.

But in the end, isn't the R&R worth it? We can't say we blame them for wanting to escape for a while. Just watch out for bears.

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