Antalya expects 12 million tourists this year
The number of foreign tourists visiting the province of Antalya on the Mediterranean coast may reach 12 million this year, according to a trading group.
More than 9 million foreign holidaymakers arrived in the city by plane between January and Aug. 31, data from the provincial directorate of culture and tourism showed.
This marked a strong 71 percent increase from the same period of last year. In the whole of 2021, the popular holiday destination welcomed 9 million visitors from other countries.
Germans topped the list of foreign visitors in the first eight months of 2022. Some 1.8 million German nationals vacationed in Antalya.
Despite the ongoing war in Ukraine, Russians continued to travel to the Mediterranean province. According to the official data, nearly 1.8 million Russians have visited Antalya since the start of the year.
Britons constituted the third-largest group of visitors at 805,000. Polish, Dutch, Kazakh, Romanians and Israelis were also on the top visitors’ list.
Between June and August alone, more than 6 million foreign tourists arrived at Antalya Airport. In the first eight months, 50,721 airplanes departed/arrived at the airport. Of those flights, nearly 36,000 took place in the summer months. The airport hosted nearly 36,000 international flights in the January-August period.
Despite the poor start into 2022, tourism activity later gained momentum, said Ferit Turgut from the Association of Turkish Travel Agencies (TÜRSAB), adding that the number of foreign tourists visiting Antalya may reach 12 million in 2022.
The tourist season may be extended well into Nov. 15, Turgut said, noting that the occupancy rate at Antalya’s hotels is at 90 percent. “We were not very optimistic at the start of the season, but the latest numbers are promising.”
The industry managed to diversify the markets and services it offers during the COVID-19 pandemic, Turgut noted.
Not only Antalya but also other holiday destinations in Türkiye are enjoying a rebound in tourism activity this season.
Occupancy rates at the country’s hotels increased from 66.1 percent in July last year to 71.3 percent.
In July 2019, when the COVID-19 pandemic had not yet hit the global travel and tourism industries, the occupancy rate at Turkish hotels was 75.6 percent. The occupancy rate in Istanbul’s hotels rose from 69.6 percent in July 2021 to 80 percent.
More than 23 million foreign tourists visited Türkiye from January to July, marking a robust 128 percent increase from a year ago.
In July alone, the country welcomed 6.7 million international holidaymakers, up from 4.6 million people a year ago and only 940,000 visitors in the same month two years ago.
As the global tourism activity gained moment, Türkiye revised its targets for 2022 from 42 million tourists and $35 billion in revenue to 47 million tourists and $37 billion, respectively.