Lot’s has happened in the press the last week, here’s our round-up of national and local Turkey tourism news.
Norwegians launch social media campaign in protest of high flight prices to Turkey (Daily Sabah 24/08/17)
In reaction to airlines cutting back flights and inflating ticket prices to Turkey, a group of Norwegians launched a social media campaign to try and prompt tour operators to play fair. The campaign (#JaJaReiser) started on Facebook and has so far reached over 1 million people. There has been a strong reaction according to the Daily Sabah article. National newspapers in Norway have picked up on the campaign selling Turkey as a great place to visit both during and off season. Nora Aspegren, a tour representative from a tour company is quoted “there has been an increase in Norwegians’ interest in Turkey towards the end of summer”, adding that they would “be increasing capacity by 25% for summer 2018”.
Turkey runs as nominee to chair UN’s Tourism Body (Daily Sabah 23/08/17)
Turkey’s Culture and Tourism Minister Numan Kurtulmus announced last Wednesday that Turkey is running as the European regional nominee in the imminent elections for the leadership of the UN’s tourism body.
According to the Daily Sabah, Kurtulmus announced Turkey’s intention to run as a candidate in a meeting in Ankara where UN World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) European representatives and ambassadors were present. If Turkey succeeds it would mean Turkey takes the lead role on UNWTO’s 22nd Executive Council between 2018 and 2021. Kurtulmus believes that Turkey’s rich cultural heritage and diversity should hold them in good stead for the post, believing that “culture and tourism remained the most significant instruments to maintain peace and understanding in a world full of conflict”. The elections will be held in China between September 10th to 16th 2017.
Turkish Company OTI Holding buys Ferien Touristik, the German tour operator (Hurriyet Daily News 23/08/17)
Following 8 months of negotiation the TUI Leisure Travel Company, Ferien Touristic has been bought by Turkish company OTI Holding for an undisclosed sum. According to the Daily Hurriyet report, Ferien had a 65 million euro ($76.59 million) turnover last year and served around 150,000 tourists. OTI, a growing company active in the accommodation, aviation, security and tourism fields may best be known locally for managing the Coral Travel Brand in Russia, Poland, Belarus, Ukraine, Germany and Turkey.
Larry Lamb and son to host new TV show on Turkey (Daily Sabah 22/08/17)
Actor Larry Lamb and his son George are hosting an exciting new pro-Turkey show on the Travel Channel entitled “Turkey: A to B”. The idea is to promote Turkey’s historical and cultural sites and give those that are still cautious about Turkey a nudge in the right direction.
A positive and informative program like this could potentially boost tourism considerably – the Travel Channel broadcasts to over 74 countries reaching more than 61 million viewers. Although the program looks to be primarily aimed at Brits, it will also air in the Middle East, Asia, Europe and Africa. The 24-day shoot has already taken place. Highlights include a low down on Istanbul, an introduction to Ephesus, a look at the hot springs in Hierapolis, a trip to Phaselis in Antalya and a balloon ride over Cappadocia. Ankara and Ordu will also be featured. Let’s now hope that tourists are lured to Turkey on the back of this and more shows of this kind are filmed showing more of the Southern coast and many tourist destinations and resorts that sadly won’t feature in the show.
Qurban Bayram Travel Chaos starts early. (Daily Sabah 23/08/17)
The 10 day Bayram break is nearly upon us and you can tell – the roads are gradually getting busier and, according to the Daily Sabah, Istanbul Airport was brimming with Turks all eager to visit family or go elsewhere for the break. The paper reports big waits and long lines at Ataturk Airport on Wednesday as pilgrims fly off to Mecca for the Hajj alongside those leaving early to make the most of the extended holiday. As we reported in our round up last week, the government decided on August 15th to prolong the Feast of Sacrifice to allow citizens to spend time with family and boost tourism. The holiday starts this Saturday 26th August ending on the 4th September. Do keep in mind that schools, banks and government buildings are likely to be shut during this period and will resume normal routine as of September 5th.
Direct Investment from EU to Turkey rose 61% (Anadolu Agency 23/08/17)
Turkeys Economy Minister announced the direct investment from EU countries to Turkey rose by over 61% year on year, from $2.7 billion (Jan-Jun 2016) to $4.1 billion (Jan – Jun 2017). According to the AA report, EU countries made up two-thirds of all direct foreign investment in Turkey. Spend by EU citizens on real estate was also on the up with a 34% increase in purchases over the same period. It is thought this surge in interest comes as a result of government incentives. Interestingly, the sharpest rise in EU investment came from the Netherlands – 104% up on last year. Out of Europe the Gulf States and Asia showed the biggest percentage hike up 322% and 128% respectively. These figures certainly do indicate a flip in foreign confidence in Turkey – let us hope it continues.
Turkish Property Sales up 42% in July (Oceanwide Properties News 24/08/17)
As we published yesterday, the number of residential homes sold in Turkey rose by over 42% in July according to TurkStat (Turkish Statistical Institute). Read the full article here.
Forest Fire destroys over 10 Acres of land near Yaniklar, Fethiye
A wildfire has destroyed over 10 acres of land towards Yaniklar in Fethiye according to the Hurriyet Daily News yesterday. The Oceanwide Properties team first spotted the fire taking hold over the other side of the bay mid-afternoon. Clouds of smoke could be seen rising to the sky and drifting inland, the coastal breeze spreading the flames. Firefighters battled for the remainder of the afternoon and evening before the fire was finally extinguished. Forestry Director Mehmet Celik is quoted in the Hurriyet as saying that the cause of the fire is as yet “unclear”. “Two aircraft, 12 sprinklers and 50 firefighting teams attended the fire. Some 10 acres of land was damaged but there was no loss of life or property”. Let’s take this as another reminder not to throw cigarette butts out of car windows, make sure BBQs and open fires are properly supervised and extinguished, and that glass soda or beer bottles are thrown away in bins rather than left on roadsides or in dry shrubbery – all common causes of fire in hot countries such as Turkey.
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