Russians Come Second in Istanbul’s Inbound Tourist Flow

Vladimir Savelyev, 20.12.2013 09:21
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More than 9.7 million foreign tourists visited Istanbul this year from January to November, which is an 11% year-on-year increase.

Russia is second with 531 thousand arrivals, constituting 5.5% of the overall tourist flow. Germans are at the forefront with 1.1 million people (11.3% of the overall tourist flow). Americans take the third place with more than 475 thousand people (4.9%), followed by France, the UK and Italy.
In 2013 tourists are expected to spend at least $11bn in Istanbul. Turkish authorities are not content with this figure, since other leading world capitals profit from tourism almost twice as much. For instance, the annual revenue from tourism for London and New York is $20bn and $19bn respectively.

Regina Savina, the Leading Manager at the Turkish department of ‘Vand International’ tour operator, told TRN that demand for Istanbul rose 25% this year. “It is a very interesting city, one that is virtually brimming with history, plus there are marketplaces, cheap street food, small and cozy hotels,” she said. Tourists fly to Istanbul round the year. Tourist flow distribution throughout the year is more or less even, with the exception of a drop during July-August, when the weather is very hot and stuffy. There are flights on any date at any time. Aeroflot and Turkish Airlines have 4 flights a day. There are also flights of Turkish low-cost airline Pegasus Airlines, but our company does not use its services.”

For holidays, ‘Vand International’ books fixed blocks of seats on Aeroflot and Turkish Airlines flights, and a fixed set of rooms in Turkish hotels.

“Our tours that start on January 2 and 3 are all but sold out. A package that includes a three-star hotel for three nights with breakfast will cost at least 600 euro,” said Savina.

The hotels are located in the historical part of the city. According to the manager, three-star hotels in Istanbul are small and cozy, with restaurants atop many of them.

Pegasus Airlines started organizing flights to Istanbul at the beginning of October. There are three trips a week. With all the duties and charges included, the price of a one-way ticket amounts to $83.99 or more. Thanks to the wide route network of the carrier, upon arriving in Istanbul passengers can continue their journey in one of the 38 destinations offered by this low-cost airline. These destinations are 21 Turkish and 17 foreign cities.

Head of the Turkish and Greek department of ‘Neva’ tour operator Gayane Satarova told TRN that Istanbul’s inbound tourist flow grew 15%. The company uses the services of Aeroflot, Turkish Airlines, Pan Ukraine and Pegasus Airlines. The Turkish low-cost airline has 30% lower ticket prices than the other airlines. According to Satarova, not too many tourists are signing up for New Year holiday tours, since the majority of people prefer to come to Istanbul in spring and autumn. ‘Neva’ offers a variety of tours to Istanbul – with or without excursions, in combination with other Turkish regions. Minimal tour duration is four days.

Страны, регионы и города: Russia, Turkey
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