Published on : Tuesday, March 17, 2020
Last year, Turkey enjoyed an all-time high with more than 45 million foreign visitors; however, its tourism industry is bracing for a huge impact during the upcoming travel season due to the novel corona virus, which has brought a deluge of travel restrictions and cancellations.
The global outbreak of the corona virus emerged right when the Turkish tourism industry entered a robust period of recovery with a sharp increase in the number of tourist arrivals after recovering from 2018 currency crisis.
Turkish Hoteliers Federation (TÜROFED) Chairman Sururi Çorabatır said that there has been a significant decline in holiday reservations with many airlines reducing the number of their flights by 50% with the majority of countries.
The beginning of this year seemed promising with the tourism industry witnessing its best January ever with 1.8 million arriving visitors, marking a 16.1% year-on-year surge, as per data by the Culture and Tourism Ministry. Hotel occupancy rates were also promising going up by almost 62%.
However, with the current situation, the country is set to experience a slowdown in the coming months, along with many other tourism destinations worldwide, although Turkey recorded only six corona virus cases so far.
To combat the spread of corona virus, the Turkish government said that it will prioritize preventing the spread of the illness within the country and make sure the safety of borders along with limiting tourist arrivals.