Some 1.5 million Ukrainians traveled abroad in 2016, and an impressive 75% chose Turkey as their destination of choice, according to the Hotels Association of Turkey (Türkiye Otelciler Birliği – TÜROB).
Turkey is now the most preferred foreign destination in Ukraine and TÜROB is expecting the trend to continue in 2017. The association prepared a detailed report of expectations and forecasts for this market after the Ukraine International Travel & Tourism (UITT), held in Kiev at the end of March. TÜROB also reported a 48% year-on-year (YoY) growth in 2016 as compared to 2015.
This positive report contrasts with earlier statements by TÜROB President Timur Bayındır who noted that this year, hotels in Istanbul alone recorded decline in revenue per available room (RevPAR) and average daily rate (ADR). For instance, in February 2017, the city’s ADR and RevPAR decreased by 19.3% and 19.9% as compared to the same timeframe in 2016.
“For Istanbul’s tourism to recover, some measures are needed urgently,” Bayındır said in a press statement.
From all Ukrainian tourists visiting Turkey in 2016, more than half preferred Antalya as their favorite destination, while some 270000 Ukrainian tourists chose Istanbul. An agreement signed mid-March in Ankara by Ukrainian Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman and Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım will allow citizens of the two countries visa-free travel and entry.
“We have signed an agreement that will allow citizens of the two countries to be able to travel only with their identity card. This agreement can be regarded as a visa exemption,” said Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım in a joint press conference on March 14.
“This visit takes place on the 25th anniversary of the beginning of Turkish-Ukrainian relations. The agreements we have made in this visit are intended to facilitate the mutual travel of our citizens. There will be mutual flights at regional airports, and the free trade agreement will increase trade,” added Ukrainian Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman.