Hoteliers expect New Year’s holiday to give boost to tourism
Representatives of the tourism industry are hopeful that domestic and international tourism activity will gather momentum around New Year's Eve.
Hotels are preparing to welcome Turkish holidaymakers as well as Europeans starting Dec. 24, while Russian tourists are expected to start to arrive in the county from Jan. 6.
Local vacationers are mostly booking hotels in the warmer provinces, such as Antalya on the Mediterranean coast, said Suat Özbek, a tour operator. But ski centers are also attracting tourists, according to Özbek.
"Demand is 50 percent to 55 percent higher compared with last year," he said.
Another favorite destination for local holidaymakers will be Northern Cyprus, according to Kaan Kavaloğlu, the president of the Mediterranean Touristic Hoteliers and Operators Association (AKTOB).
Antalya will also lure German and British tourists during New Year's Eve, said Kavaloğlu, adding that he expects hotels, which are still open, to be fully booked.
"Around 30 percent of the hotels with a total bed capacity of 250,000 are presently open. We expect occupancy rate at those facilities to be around 80 percent," he added.
Besides Russians, Germans and Britons, there will be tourist arrivals from Eastern Europe and the Balkans, according to Kavaloğlu.
Tourism activity will be strong between Dec. 20 and 31 thanks to the expected arrival of European and Russian holidaymakers, said Hamit Kuk, an adviser to the Association and Turkish Travel Agencies (TÜRSAB).
With the strong tourism activity in December, tourist arrivals in 2023 are likely to surpass the record numbers in 2019, when Türkiye welcomed a total of 51.7 million visitors, said Kuk.
Between January and October, 50.2 million tourists...