Antalya, English tourists

Turkey and Russia agree after 3 months to resume their flights

The news has been well received by the tourism sector, since Russia is one of the main sources of tourism for Turkey, although the country is one of the most affected by the coronavirus.

Turkey and Russia have agreed to resume flights between the two countries from July 15, after three and a half months suspended due to the coronavirus pandemic: a decision welcomed by the Turkish tourism industry, which has on Russian tourists one of their main sources of income.

“We have agreed to resume flights with Russia starting today,” Turkey’s transport and infrastructure minister Adil Karaismailoğlu announced on Wednesday. Russia had since March 27 suspended flights to Turkey, where Antalya is the main sun and beach destination for Russian tourists. In 2019 Russians were the largest group of tourists to visit Turkey, totalling about 7 million and representing 15.6% of the total.

Despite the fact that the tourism sector in Turkey has received the news with open arms, there are many who fear that a premature reopening of the borders will also lead to a greater increase in infections by coronavirus. In fact, with more than 750,000 infected and almost 12,000 dead, Russia is the 4th country in the world most affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Turkey, the 6th largest tourist destination in the world, has been gradually reopening its borders since the beginning of June as the de-escalation began after the decline in coronavirus infections. Before including Russia, the Turkish government had resumed flights with other 31 countries, and it is in negotiations with 20 more.