Turkey, Ephesus ruins

Turkey’s tourism revenues fell 65% due to coronavirus

16 million tourists travelled to Turkey in 2020, 69.5% less than in 2019; spending per tourist suffered even a greater fall.

Turkey’s tourism revenues totalled € 10.37 billion in 2020, representing a 65.1% drop compared to the previous year – a slump mainly attributed to the worldwide decline in tourism activity due to the coronavirus pandemic.

According to data published this Friday by the Turkish Statistical Institute (TÜİK), spending on tourism suffered an even greater drop in 2020 in Turkey amounting to about 906 million euros, 74.9% less than in 2019; some 785 million euros came from individual tourist expenses, while the rest came from purchases of tourist packages and tours.

As for the number of tourists who visited Turkey, it fell by 69.5% in 2020 to 16 million people, a clear contrast to 2019, when all tourism records were broken. 80.3% of those who arrived in Turkey last year were foreign visitors, while the remaining 19.7% were Turkish citizens residing outside the country.

2 out of 3 foreigners who travelled to Turkey in 2020 despite the coronavirus did so for tourism, entertainment, to attend sports activities or to see cultural activities such as concerts, exhibitions, etc. As for the Turks living abroad, also 2 out of 3 travelled to Turkey to visit family and friends. The growing number of tourists travelling to Turkey for health tourism (including hair transplants) also stands out.