Demand still strong for sailing holidays this summer
Renting boats became very popular at the height of COVID-19 for those who could afford it, as it offered isolated vacation, but even though the pandemic situation is improving, sailing holiday has not fallen out of favor, on the contrary, demand for boat rentals is only growing stronger, according to people from the industry.
“Compared to last year, early bookings increased by 43 percent, while our sales volume rose by 72 percent,” said Baran Yıldırım, CEO of yacht charter platform viravira.co.
Mostly large families and people who go on vacation with a group of friends show interest in rental boats.
Early reservation data for boat rentals suggest that the favorite destination will be the famous town of Göcek in the southwestern province of Muğla.
Some 18 percent, who already booked a boat, will be heading to Fethiye, and another 14 percent will set sail for Bozburun this summer. Both districts are in Muğla.
Marmaris, Bodrum, Kaş, İzmir and Datça appear to be other favorite destinations for those who choose to spend their vacation on boats this summer.
Yachts, catamarans, sailboats and motor yachts are available to rent at varying prices, depending on the number of passengers and the type of boat.
Weekly rental prices per person for a sailboat with the capacity of eight passengers start from 3,000 Turkish Liras ($200). The fare for a catamaran is around 5,000 liras and for motor yachts is 6,500 liras.
People from the industry expect domestic tourism activity, which took a hit last year and in 2020 from COVID-19, to pick up this summer and boost demand for hotels and alternative vacation venues.
For instance, the interest in caravan holidays, whose popularity also rose over the past two years due to the pandemic, has not disappeared either despite the increasing costs stemming from higher gasoline prices.
Travelers are not likely to kick some of the habits they developed during the pandemic, and caravan holidays are one of them, according to Eren Gündüz, deputy general manager responsible for car rentals at Otokoç Otomotiv.
“People increasingly turned to caravans, boats and bungalows to keep away from crowds during their vacation in the past two years. In the meantime, the caravan rental business has grown,” Gündüz said.
The executive expects the interest in caravan rentals to remain robust this summer.