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New tourist visa changes by Turkey

Those who have travelled to Turkey in the past will be only too aware of waiting in a queue when you get off the plane with their ten pound note waiting to get their entry visa stamp in their passport. However this is soon to be a thing of the past. 

Turkish e-visaThe Turkish government will shortly require travellers to apply online for their visa prior to travelling. As of April 10, 2014 all passengers travelling to Turkey with the exception of those travelling on a cruise ship disembarking and leaving the same day will need to have obtained the new electronic visa.

How to apply
The cost of the e-visa remains unchanged at £10.00 and is emailed to passengers prior to their departure. Passengers will need to provide their name, date and place of birth, a valid email address and passport details. This document will have to be presented at immigration on arrival in Turkey to gain entry into the country. 

Cautionary advice
According to the Foreign and Commonwealth there are already unauthorised websites trying to charge additional fees for the electronic visa process. It is advisable to use the official website, www.evisa.gov.tr here travellers will not only know that they are making the required application but they will be spending the correct designated amount £10.00.

No more waiting in long queuesUnderstanding the new e-visa system
Although it is possible to apply online already for the electronic visa there still appears to be misunderstandings amongst both travellers and travel agents. ABTA, the Association of British Travel Agents has provided travel agents with all of the necessary information and they have been informed that it is their responsibility to ensure that holiday makers are aware of the e-visa ahead of their travel. However there is still the issue of those who choose not to book through an ABTA member that may find themselves being refused entry. 

The e-visa has been introduced to speed up the entire entry process into Turkey. It has been suggested that these new measures will cut the timescale down to just ten minutes. 

Tourism and Turkey
Turkey ranks amongst the top five holiday destinations for British travellers and is increasing year on year. This is one of the reasons that ABTA are so concerned that travellers are made aware of the new e-visa, as failure to produce this may result in refusal of entry. 

Statistics show that in the first eight months of 2013 tourists flocked in their numbers to Turkey recording an immense 24.9 million visitors, an increase of over 10% compared to the year before. 

The number of tourists has increased noticeably to Turkey and they have surpassed their competitors according to reports that were compiled by the AKTOB – Mediterranean Tourism Hoteliers Union and also based on the data available from the SGK – Social Security Institution.

Turkey has the fastest growth tourist market in the world, so what is it that attracts tourists to this part of the world? Turkey has such universal appeal as it not only has the most spectacular unspoilt beaches, coastline and mountainous scenery there is also an abundance of historical sites to visit. Turkey also has the perfect climate; it is a country where it is always warm. 

The majority of hotels in Turkey offer “all inclusive” packages which is a very popular service amongst travellers in particular those with families. 

Top 5 tourist destinations in Turkey

Paragliding1.    Oludeniz beach
Oludeniz is the smallest resort on the south west coast of Turkey that is home to the Blue Lagoon which is one of the most photographed beaches on the Med. Blue Lagoon boasts national park status a blue flag award and is simply idyllic. Oludeniz is not just for the sun worshippers, there are a variety of shops on the promenade, paragliding and a multitude of water sports including canoeing and sailing plus a fair amount of places to visit. With all of this, it is not difficult to see why Oludeniz tops the list. 

2.    Istanbul
With its spectacular geographical location astride both Asia and Europe it is no surprise that Istanbul has made the top five. Istanbul has everything on offer and provides an opportunity to combine all types of recreation. There are beaches the historic part of town, and nearly every day sees an event of either world or European level held. There are museums and many fascinating areas to explore. Many tourists come to the city on the shores of the Bosphorus. Istanbul can offer a good value for money holiday, which has something for everyone. 

3.    Bodrum
Bodrum is one of the most popular resorts in Turkey and thanks to its increasing popularity with celebrities it now has quite a reputation for chic that rivals even St Tropez. Bodrum has everything from historical sites to the fantastic weekly markets, there are an abundance of shops, restaurants, cafes and bars which make the perfect way to spend a day. By night Bodrum becomes a hive of activity with many discos and parties.

4.    Side
Side boasts great water sports, if you like to shop then Manavgat is the perfect place to do a little bartering and you will find no end of delightful products on offer. For those wanting to party of an evening the most popular hangout can be found down by the coast or there are many other discos along the harbour. For Cappadociathose preferring a little peace a night walk through the ruins or on the beach is an experience that you will always treasure. 

5.    Cappadocia
This unique place set in the heart of Turkey is purely delightful, with a plateau that resembles a lunar landscape. Cappadocia is the home of cliffs, vineyards and mystery. It is from here that a majority of the wines that have become so popular with the Europeans are created. With the hotels being carved into the cliffs there is no better experience than to sit in your balcony and enjoy a drink whilst watching the glorious sunset. 

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