Foreign visitors to Turkey are up by 14.5%

Beach in Turkey

The Culture and Tourism Ministry in Turkey has confirmed that international visitor numbers from January to October have hit a staggering 40.7 million this year so far, that equates to an increase of 14.5% year-on-year when compared with 2018.

Which areas in Turkey are most popular?

Antalya in the Mediterranean resort city takes the top spot, playing host to 14.1 million visitors in the first ten months of the year so far. Coming in second was Turkey’s biggest city in terms of population, Istanbul, which boasted foreign visitor numbers of 12.7 million from the period of January to October.

Where do the visitors come from?

Top of the foreign visitor list were Russians with 6.7 million travelling to Turkey, which is a massive increase of 16.94% compared with last year. German visitors to Turkey totalled 4.6 million and visitors from the United Kingdom came in third with 2.4 million choosing Turkey and marking an increase of over 11%.

Third Quarter figures in Turkey

4.3 million foreign visitors chose Turkey as their destination of choice in October alone, which is equal to 14.3% year-on-year growth. In the third quarter of 2019, over 21.6 million visitors were welcomed to Turkey, which was a rise of 15% and these figures were made up of 85.3% foreign visitors and 14.7% Turkish citizens who currently reside in other countries and return home to visit family members.

Tourism and Earnings in Turkey

The earnings Turkey has gained from tourism has risen in all three quarters of this year, with Q1 up by 4.6% and Q2 up by 13.2%.

In accordance with the UNWTO (U.N World Tourism Organisation) data released in 2019 showed that there were 39.5 million foreign visitors that entered Turkey in 2018, which was an increase of 7.1 million in comparison with 2017. In terms of total tourist income, Turkey currently ranks 14 in the world, and 6 in the world for the number of tourists choosing Turkey as their go to destination when travelling abroad.

Official data confirms that tourism makes up a major proportion of the country’s income. In 2018, the tourist income totalled 29.5 billion USD in total. The tourism strategy that has been put in place aims to reach over 75 million tourists with projected revenue by 2023 of 65 billion USD, and this will coincide with the Turkish Republic foundations 100 year anniversary. These figures have been revised and increased from the original projections that were for 50 million tourists and a tourism income totalling 50 billion USD.


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