Intourist was the official state travel agency of the Soviet Union, founded in 1929 by Joseph Stalin. and was staffed by NKVD and later KGB officials. In 1933 Aron Sheinman started work for Intourist in London and filled the post of Director from 1937 to 1939. When he was dismissed he refused to return to Moscow, and gained British citizenship later that year. Intourist was responsible for managing the great majority of foreigners' access to, and travel within, the Soviet Union. One witticism of the Cold War period characterized Intourist by stating that "Intourist is to tourism what indigestion is to digestion."
The enterprise was privatised in 1992. In 2011 VAO Intourist established the Joint Venture with Thomas Cook Group plc with the share of 49.9 % and 50.1% respectively. The incoming business within the Joint Venture was fully transferred to the Intourist LLC which intends continue to expand the tour operating services and host tourists.
- Visit Crimea Moscow : Intourist, 1930
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