Turkey to promote Weddings, Golf and MICE tourism from India


Records 10% increase in Indian arrivals: Plans to launch training program for travel trade

Turkey has witnessed a growth of 10% in tourist arrivals from India from January to September 2015, as compared to the same period in 2014The NTO expects to close the year with more than 10% increase, hopefully touching the figure of 130,000 Indian tourist arrivals, informed Ozgur Ayturk, Coordinator, Turkish Ministry of Culture and Tourism General Directorate of Promotion – Middle East, Africa and Turkic Republics recently during the road show organized by Turkish Tourism here in New Delhi.  The Ministry, in coordination with the Association of Turkish Travel Agents (ATTA) and Turkish Hoteliers Federation featured 27 suppliers during the 2-city road show in Mumbai and Delhi. The roadshow was attended by a total of about 600 tour operators and travel agents.

Informing about Turkey’s potential as a MICE destination, he said, MICE is a very potential segment which is picking up from the Indian market. “Over 20% of the total arrivals from India constitute of MICE travellers. We wish to further leverage on it.

“We are majorly concentrating on promoting wedding tourism to Istanbul and Antalya; golf tourism to Antalya and honeymooners to Istanbul, Antalya and Cappadocia, through this roadshow,” asserted Ayturk. He added that from the next year, Turkish Tourism plans to focus on potential Tier-II and Tier-III cities as well. Istanbul, Antalya and Cappadocia being top picks by Indian travellers, the Ministry also aims to promote newer destinations such as Izmir, Bodrum and the other destinations on the Western Coast to the Indian clientele.

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The Turkish Ministry of Culture and Tourism plans to launch a training program for the Indian travel trade by 2016, he informed. In the past, Turkish Tourism has conducted workshops for the travel trade in association with Kuoni Academy, which covered about 5 major cities of India. “Educating the travel trade on Turkish Tourism is primarily on our minds,” he added.

Ayturk informed that the Turkish Ministry of Culture and Tourism is planning to appoint a full time Culture and Tourism Counsellor at the Turkish Embassy in New Delhi. Elections will be held in Turkey next month, post which the Ministry will decide on the new appointment in the Indian market, he averred.

Talking about the promotional plans, Ayturk confirmed that since 2014, the Ministry has been aggressively focusing on promoting the destination on social media such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube. Several digital campaigns are promoted from time to time where social influencers such as bloggers are hosted in Turkey and stories are curated out of it. “Going forward, we will continue to ensure our presence in major travel trade events such as SATTE, OTM and IITT,” he said.