In Moscow last weekend the World Tourism Forum at the Ritz-Carlton brought together professionals of the tourism industry of Turkey, Russia and other countries, along with investors and government representatives. The big topic of discussion was Russian-Turkish tourism for the coming season, along with expectations of professionals in the industry.
The outlook for Russian tourism to Turkey is very bright, but one major stumbling block was the ruble as medium inside Turkey, to which the Director of the Turkish Bank Denizbank Hakan Ates had to say:
“Russian tourists in Turkey will be able to conduct all necessary transactions in banks and through ATMs, rubles are accepted as payment. At the same time to withdraw rubles will be without Commission.”
The bank director went on to assure Russian agencies that everything humanly possible is being done to allow for Russians to feel at home and to pay in rubles. Neset Kochkar, Chairman of the Board of Directors ANEX Tour suggested that Russians have missed the Turkish resorts owing to geo-political crises of late. He suggested that Turkey has no real competitors for Russians with regard to price and quality of service.
“Last year, for obvious reasons, many Russian tourists are unable to travel to Turkey, and were forced to choose other resorts. Many of them remained unhappy with your stay, particularly the service and prices. Sale Turkey now increased 4-5 times in comparison with 2015. This suggests that the Russians missed the Turkish resorts. The country has virtually no competitors in terms of service, quality and price.”
According to Kochkar, ANEX Tour plans to send about 1 million of Russians, while overall 5 million Russians are expected to visit Turkey in 2017.
Events like the World Tourism Forum are important for evaluating markets like the Turkish-Russia segment, which is among the leaders for early bookings for travelers from the Federation. Other key topics covered at this Moscow event were; technology trends, travel trends on the Russian internet, MICE trends, and Tourism investments to name a few.