Moscow, Russia – TURSAB President Firuz Baglikaya informed ATOR President Lomidze about the measures taken in Turkey for the Covid-19 outbreak. ATOR President Maya Lomidze said that they are closely following the measures, Turkey has implemented the best measures in the world, but the measures taken these days have reduced tour sales to Turkey in Russia. Among the top 10 destinations for Russian tour operators, Turkey is number one, Lomidze said, ‘Russian tourists love Turkey very much.’

TURSAB continues its online meetings with the heads of the sector of Turkey’s most important foreign tourism markets about expectations and demands for 2021.

TURSAB President Firuz Baglikaya held his second online meeting with Maya Lomidze, the Executive Director of the Association of Tour Operators in Russia, after meeting with the Association of British Travel Agents (ABTA).

In Baglikaya and Lomidze’s video interview, the problems experienced by tour operators and travel agencies in the Turkish-Russian tourism market before the 2021 tourist season, solution proposals, expectations and predictions were discussed in detail.

Firuz Baglikaya informed ATOR President Lomidze about the measures taken in Turkey for the Covid-19 outbreak.

“Turkey has implemented the best measures in the world”

Maya Lomidze, President of ATOR, said that they are closely following the measures, noting that Turkey has implemented the best measures in the world, but the measures taken today have reduced tour sales in Russia to Turkey.

Lomidze said that in 2020, requests from Russia abroad fell by 70 percent, noting that Russians are turning to the Southern Black Sea provinces in domestic tourism, and resorts there are not enough to meet expectations.

“Turkey is number one among the top 10 destinations for Russian tour operators”

“Russia’s Black Sea resorts could not replace Mediterranean, Pacific or Caribbean resorts,” said Maya Lomidze. In the all-inclusive system, we have neither the required Room Volume nor the required amount of 4-5-star all-inclusive hotel. Of course, we need to invest in infrastructure, but the effect will last 5-7 years.” she made her assessment.

Russian tour operators in Turkey were among the top 10 destinations by 2020, a number indicating Lomidze from Russia 2020, Turkey, Thailand, Tunisia, Greece, United Arab Emirates, Spain, Vietnam, Italy and Bulgaria noted that the tourism movement takes place.

Lomidze said: ‘98.5 per cent of all foreign trips were made for tourism purposes. Turkey has become our number one destination abroad., “she said.

“Russian tourists love Turkey very much”

ATOR President Lomidze answered TURSAB President Baglikaya’s question about the forecast for 2021 as follows:

“If the pandemic subsides in the spring and summer, if PCR testing is not requested in Turkey, your country may once again be number one in the Russian outbound tourism next summer season and perhaps in the autumn. If all goes well and the summer season begins in May, the number of Russian tourists in Turkey will increase by 20-25 percent compared to the 2020 Summer season. Turkey will remain number one in Russia in 2021-2022 and beyond. Because Russian tourists love Turkey very much. But even though the vaccination process has begun, uncertainty remains, and due to economic and financial conditions, the level of well-being has fallen. We think that 2021 will be difficult than 2020.”

“What are your suggestions for increasing interest in Turkey in Russia? on the question, Lomidze said, “the Russian interest in destinations outside Antalya has also increased. The pandemic gave an opportunity to start diversifying The Shape of Russian tourism in your country. City tours in Istanbul, history and gastronomy tours in Mesopotamia region, Hattusa in Central Anatolia, the Black Sea and Van have the opportunity to increase the flow of tourists. Our tour operators started selling tours to Turkey-Mesopotamia in the autumn. But there is absolutely no advertising and marketing work in the Russian market of these ‘new’ regions of Turkey. In this case, we can help Turkey on the basis of promotion. We can organize a promotional trip to Turkey or a press tour. In this sense, we are ready to cooperate with TURSAB.” she made her assessment.

TURSAB President Firuz Baglikaya also stated that 2 million Russian tourists were welcomed in Turkey in 2020, ” I hope that as soon as 2019 figures will catch up again. In 2021, we will be very happy to welcome the Russians in our country,” she said.

TURSAB President Baglikaya’s next meeting will be with Norbert Fiebig) , President of the German Travel Association (DRV).