Should Turkey expect return of Russian tourists?
Despite the decision to "lift Turkey tourism ban", made yesterday after phone conversation between Russian and Turkish presidents, Vladimir Putin and Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Turkey should not expect the return of previous tourists flow from Russia in the near future, experts Galina Dekhtyar and Eugeny Itsakov told Vestnik Kavkaza.
Professor of the Department of Business Process Management in Production and Service of RANEPA, Galina Dekhtyar, stressed that secutiry is the primary factor here, and Turkey has problems with it: on June 28 terrorists carried out terrorist attack on the airport in Istanbul, and "Istanbul is a place visited by a lot of Russian tourists, who come there to purchase different products."
According to her, it is not surprising that the statement of Turkish President about restoration of relations with Russia caused such strong reaction among certain segments of terrorists. "That's why the attack occurred. It can be concluded that something similar can happen at any place in Turkey that will be open for Russian tourists. So even if we get the information that our Ministry of Foreign Affairs removes all restrictions, I doubt that a lot of tourists will go to Turkey and there will be more charter flights," she stated.
If we talk about other regions of Turkey that were previously visited by residents of not Moscow and St. Petersburg, but regions, via low-budget tours, right now a large number of refugees from Syria are living in these low-rated and unknown hotels, she said. "So I don't think that tourist flow will suddenly return to Turkey: people are really scared," the expert stressed.
"In addition, people in Turkey are pretty religious, so there can be certain negative incidents even if everything is safe," she added.
Senior Lecturer, Department of Management and Business Department of Economics and Social Sciences at RANEPA, Eugeny Itsakov, also stated that restoration of tourist flow to Turkey to the former level is impossible. "Many potential tourists were caught in the information war and view Turkey extremely negatively. Some people have already chose other destinations, many have already bought tickets to other resorts. It is unlikely that tour operators will be able to quickly restore and restart former ties. Moreover, constant terrorist attacks are not helping to improve the attractiveness of Turkey as a tourist destination. Tour operators promise to restore all old ties and charters in a month, but next month - July will end, and it will be just two months until the end of holiday season," he pointed out.
The expert explained that above all, in order to increase the attractiveness of Turkey, it is necessary to stop all internal and external conflicts to ensure the safety of tourists.
However, he added, by big numbers law, there will always be those who will travel anywhere. "The question is how many tourists will go. Turkey and Egypt were always very popular among Russians. I'm sure many people would like to once again visit their favorite resorts, so they can make this decision," the expert warned.