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Sunday, March 18, 2018

Turkey bears for Russia even greater losses than expected

The first week of summer has definitively dispelled hopes of Turkey for a successful tourist season. Many of the hotels did not open, the beaches are deserted, tens of thousands of Turks lost their jobs. And it’s not just the absence of Russian tourists – inhabitants of a number of European countries also refused to come to Turkey. What is happening in the once-popular among Russians resorts?

The Turkish resort of Antalya is experiencing the worst June in recent decades, in connection with the sharp decline in tourist arrivals from Russia and Germany by 98% and 45%, respectively, writes Hurriyet Daily News.

“There are tourists from all over the world, not only Russian. A week and a half saw only one girl who spoke Russian, and that was from Tashkent”

According to the Antalya airport, 1 to 16 of June at resort profit 302,5 thousand tourists from foreign countries, which is 59% less than in the same period a year earlier, reports “Interfax”.

The number of Russian tourists in the first two weeks of the month amounted to only 3.5 million, is 98.7% less than in the first half of June 2015. The total number of Russian tourists visiting Antalya from January to may amounted to 21 thousand, which is almost 26 times less than for the same period in 2015, and 38 times less than five months of 2014.

“Few tourists, Russians this year has not arrived, and that is a great sadness for all workers in the tourism industry – says the newspaper VIEW Chairman of the Russian society in Antalya Hope the Pelit. Is reflected on all, starting with the hoteliers and ending by employees of stores who have come here to work, and no earnings. No Russian. Many of the hotels did not open at all. To replace the 3.5 million Russian, who was last year on the Antalya coast, of course, one year is impossible. Russians come but its course now.”

“There are tourists from all over the world, not only Russian. A week and a half saw only one girl who spoke Russian, and that was from Tashkent,” – says the newspaper VIEW Elizabeth Mayna, Russian woman, who now rests in Turkey. She travels to Turkey, bought a ticket with Turkish Airlines. The girl from Tashkent said that studying in Ankara University, faculty of hospitality in Antalya came to practice. But “Russian” Antalya coast now little. “There is no one not take a job, on the contrary, fired. Now she settled in Dalyan in the hotel, but travelers are still not enough,” says Elizabeth.

“On the other hand, in the relationship, nothing has changed,” says Hope Pelit, whose husband owns the four-star hotel in Kremer. – The local population continues to love living here Russian, they do not feel any oppression. On the contrary, the crisis has rallied and even more became friends two people together”.

“Are (the Turks) well, all help is very attentive and hospitable. Everyone is asking when will come the Russians, they say, that our very missed, especially by beautiful Russian women,” confirms Russian tourist.

Turkish airlines not complaining

However, the Turkish Airlines says that if the beginning of this year there was a serious decline in passenger traffic from Russia, then from April it began to recover and by June had reached last year. We are talking about regular flights. This was stated by the Director of the representative office of Turkish Airlines in Russia, Mefail Deribash. “Since April, the occupancy rate increased again, and now I can say that it is 80% on these flights,” – said Deribas. In 2014 and 2015 airline transported 1.25 million Russian passengers per year. On the other hand, the yield of transportation decreased due to the devaluation of the ruble, he said.

This suggests that in the summer season, some Russians decided to go for a vacation in Turkey alone, because the packages are not selling. However, this unorganized tourism is just a drop in the ocean. “The sheer number of flights has decreased significantly, the majority of Russians traveled to Turkey Charter programs inside packages of tour operators. Their share was almost 90% of the total. Eight of the largest tour operators sent from all over Russia every day for 10 or more flights. On each Board were 250-400 passengers. Today it is a modest fraction of the volume that was,” – says the newspaper VIEW Director of the Association “Turpomosch” Oleksandr Osaulenko.

Regular flights of Russian tourists do not fly, mainly used them for business trips, as well as the Russians, who have their own property in Turkey. “Business itself is now not, but there are interpersonal relations between citizens of the two countries, there is a demand for flights to Turkey from the Russians, who have real estate there. The small stream of regular flights of “Aeroflot” and Turkish Airlines and cover,” says Osaulenko.

A few, but flying on their own on holiday to Turkey. This is not as difficult as it may seem. Although the border guards at Domodedovo airport, for example, you can ask a lot more questions to the passengers to Turkey than usual, ask to see your hotel, ask about the availability of friends in the country and purpose of visit.

The Germans, too, “threw” Turkey

Interestingly, not only Russian tourists EN masse stopped flying to Turkey for obvious reasons, but also German tourists, which has traditionally been more on the Turkish resorts, than of the Russians. So, in 2014, Turkey was visited by 4.4 million Russian tourists and 5.2 million German. Now, however, the number of German tourists in the first two weeks of June – beginning of summer – has decreased by 45%, up to 117.8 thousand people.

“The Germans fear for their life and health, and not because there the Russians do not go, but because a private assessment of the situation in Turkey,” – said Osaulenko.

“The example of the Germans shows that this is not just a political decision of a single country, it is also a concern about safety, like the UK, Germany and several other countries. This motivates the reduction of tourist flow to Turkey. Unfortunately, today the safety of tourists in Turkey, no one can guarantee,” says the source.

However, the resident Kramer Hope Pelit considers that the flow of tourists from Germany declined as from Russia, for reasons lying in the plane of high politics. Relations between Ankara and Berlin escalated because of the migration issue and also because of the question of the recognition by Germany of the Armenian genocide.


In April, the Ministry of culture and tourism of Turkey has stated that the country faced a maximum level of decline in tourist arrivals since 1999.

This year, according to various estimates, Turkey’s losses from the reduction of tourist flow can be between 8 to 12 billion dollars. According to the initial prognosis, the loss of the tourism industry due to the downturn of tourist flow from Russia and Europe could be 8-9 billion dollars, and now Turkey be short $ 12 billion, said the head of the Mediterranean Association of hoteliers and tourism workers Yusuf Hadislar. According to him, due to the undiscovered many hotels about 80-100 thousand people will become unemployed. “We are now in a position that is much worse than expected by the pessimistic scenario of development of events”, – said the head of the chamber of Commerce of Antalya, Davutoglu, Cetin.


Director of the Association “Turpomosch” says that the Russian tour operators, which at the end of last year, correctly assessed the situation, able to find their way. First and foremost managed to redirect flows with Turkey and Egypt for internal areas – Krasnodar Krai and the Crimea.

“Now these areas show significant growth. Suffice it to say that we have not yet entered the peak season, July and August, but the Crimea, crossed the mark of 1 million tourists in may. Of course, everyone was expecting growth, but not the same dynamics. Now we in the Association “Turpomosch” calling tourists say that there is some overbooking (sverhbronirovanie) that is due to mass flow. But I must give credit to operators that they can cope with peak load and find options that are convenient for the customer. It is, fortunately, isolated cases”, – says Alexander Osaulenko.

The domestic tourism product, he said, definitely cheaper in comparison with private resorts. “We for the first time this year, observed an important trend – the tour package organized groups was 22% cheaper than if the tourist himself booked, and organized the rest. This is something that was not now there. Unfortunately, not all tourists have this information,” says Osaulenko. This trend was typical for holiday in Egypt and Turkey through the travel Agency, the vacation is cheaper than in self-booking and organization.

In addition to the Crimea and Sochi, there are still five countries that won the fight for Russian tourists such as Greece, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Spain and Israel. They managed to drag to your coast those Russian tourists who have previously traveled to Turkey and Egypt. From distant areas shot also Vietnam. “Foreign destinations, which has replaced Turkey and Egypt, are still expensive. The currency component has become cheaper, but in ruble terms in any case is more expensive,” concludes the source.

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