Turkish tourism sector expects ‘last minute’ reservations by Russian tourists
ISTANBUL - Anadolu Agency
HÜRRİYET PhotoTurkish tourism representatives believe it is still possible for Turkey to attract more Russian tourists making “last minute” reservations, amid a dramatic slowdown in Russian tourists coming to the country.
“We believe Russian tourists will decide to visit Turkey at the last minute … We expect the rise of Russian touristic trip cancellations will gradually end and instead we will see a rise in reservations from Russia,” said a hopeful statement issued by the Touristic Hoteliers and Investors Association (TUROB).
The recent economic crisis in Russia and countries of the former Soviet Union has continued to prove detrimental for the Turkish tourism sector.
According to data from the Culture and Tourism Ministry, the number of Russian tourists visiting Turkey declined to 92,000 in the first two months of 2015, marking a 26 percent drop from the same period in 2014. This trend has also continued through March.
Many tour operators representing the Russian market are now asking for larger discounts in hotel room prices in Turkish resorts.
“It is highly possible that we will see a rise in the number of Russian tourists visiting Turkey in 2015 and 2016 … But a healthy balance between price and quality is of great importance for the tourism sector. There might be irreversible losses in service standards if prices are cut too much,” the TUROB statement added.
The statement also emphasized that the TUROB and the Turkish government should focus on the “quality of the tourism,” rather than just the numbers.