The News “Visa Requirement to be abolished’ has been enough to liven up travel plans
The news ‘Visa requirement to be abolished with EU countries’ caused great enthusiasm and excitement among citizens and tourism agencies. The promise of the Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu in connection with the removal of visa requirement after Brussels summit in June has caused great enthusiasm in tourism sector. Thousands of Turkish citizens were postponing their travel plans to Europe in order to avoid visa problems. Now, Turkish people are showing enthusiasm to European tours for summer holiday. Thousands of football fans are planning to watch the European Football Championship in France between June 10 and July 10. Travel agencies are renewing tour programs to be prepared for increasing demand after June.
‘FREEDOM OF MOVEMENT IS PREVENTED’
TURSAB President Başaran Ulusoy stated, “Visa requirement is unfair in today’s world. It is unfair and pointless to prevent freedom of movement.” Ulusoy explained 9 million Turks travelled abroad in 2015.
“When the visa regime is abolished, More Turkish people will be able to travel. This decision will not only increase foreign travels but also increase the number of tourists visiting Turkey, because flights to Europe will be full on return. Costs will be lowered this way and more tourists will visit our country. If visa regime is abolished in June, the attention of Turkish citizens to European Championship will be more than previous championships this year. They will have a chance to go to France to watch the games.”
‘IT WILL BRING GREAT ENTHUSIASM’
Faruk Pekin, Chairman of Fest Travel Executive Board, said there will be enormous demand in tourism if EU abolishes visa requirement for Turkish citizens: “We can say that we have faced fewer problems in Schengen these days. The only problem is that bank accounts are checked. Travellers do not want to share their bank details. The requirement to submit signed and sealed bank documents make people more reluctant to travel. Visa conditions of Ireland and the UK, countries outside of Schengen area, are very detailed. We wish there would be no visa requirement. Until this happens, we hope the bookings from other travel agencies and hotels will suffice.”
‘NUMBER OF TOURISTS TRAVELLING ABROAD TO INCREASE 70-80 %’
Bora Sevindir, Director of Jolly Tour Visa Department, stated, “After the visa requirement is abolished, there will be a considerable boom in tourism sector. The number of tourists travelling abroad will increase 70/80%.”
Sevindir added, “The cost of visa is 135 EUR, which is really expensive. Apart from visa fees, we have tours cost 149/249 EUR. It will be charming to go abroad when people will not have to pay 135 EUR for visa anymore. This visa requirement enables tours only to some specific cities. For example, Monte Carlo and Nice may be added to tours of France. Same problem applies to Spain, Portuguese and Italy. People who are not bothered with visa costs feel intimidated by all the documentation and paperwork as well. These people will be more eager to go abroad since there will be no visa problem anymore.”
‘WE WILL SAVE €300 MILLION’
Mehmet Okumuş, President of the Project of Europe without Visa Barrier and Platform to Promote Turkey, said, “The abolishment of visa regime will stop the unfair treatment to Turkish people that has been carrying on for almost 35 years. The biggest barrier for Turkish economy will be resolved. Our businessmen will be able to travel to EU countries more easily. Turkish people will not have to wait on long visa queues for application and they will not have to pay almost €300 million for visa in total every year. Their personal details will not be exposed. They will not face inferior and unfair treatment. It will be possible to travel to Schengen Area for touristic and business purposes only with a passport and without paying visa fees, waiting on queues, submitting all the documentation for 3 months. EU membership process of Turkey will speed up.”
’40 % BOOM ESTIMATED IN TOURS’
İbrahim Cenk Okumuş, Director of Etstur Foreign Tours, indicated that they were delighted by the recent developments regarding the abolishment of visa requirement for travelling to Schengen area countries freely. As Etstur, we expect more diversity in our tours and almost 40 % boom. We predict more enthusiasm particularly for tours by bus. Since the costs of transportation and accommodation will lower, people preferring to travel by their own vehicles will show more interests. An increasing demand is inevitable for the furthest countries of Europe. As Etstur, we are following this process closely. All our programs are ready. We will bring them into action in the event that visa requirement is abolished.”