With more than 23 million overseas visitors generating nearly $40bn in tourism revenues, Turkey has ranked as the most popular destination for European holidaymakers this summer.
“Türkiye has been among the destinations to experience a marked upturn in international arrivals during the peak summer season,” thanks to pent-up demand for travel being unleashed with the lifting or easing of travel restrictions, World Tourism Organisation secretary general Zurab Pololikashvili told Turkish news agency Anadolu Agency (AA).
The 23 million visitors Turkey attracted – between January and the end of July – was up 128% on the same period last year.
That growth has come from European visitors – Germany and the UK, in particular.
“Coupled with the country’s rich history, and its many attractions, including coastal destinations, Türkiye is an attractive option for tourists, most notably from key European source markets,” Mr Pololikashvili told AA.
Turkey has also continued to attract its traditional large number of Russian tourists and, despite, the conflict brought about by Russia’s illegal invasion of Ukraine, Turkey has raised its full-year in-bound tourism targets to 47 million tourists and $37bn in revenue.
Previously, it expected 45 million visitors to generate $35bn.
The first half of this year saw Turkey’s in-bound visitor numbers recover to nearly half of the corresponding period in pre-pandemic 2019.
But, the World Tourism Organisation has warned that the perfect storm of a weakening global economy coupled with the war in Ukraine, may damage Turkey’s tourism recovery.
The war could cause global tourism an estimated $14bn in lost revenues. Nevertheless. The World Travel and Tourism Council remains upbeat – its president and chief executive, Julia Simpson telling AA that the global outlook remains positive.
“Travel is going to be one of the driving forces behind the global recovery, creating nearly 126 million jobs over the next decade. In fact, one in three of every new job created will be in our sector,” she said, adding that the tourism industry is on course to return to pre-pandemic levels by next year.