Focus on Istanbul

Friday, 31 August 2018

Istanbul is Turkey’s principal industrial, economic and cultural center. It’s the only city in the world located between two continents – Europe and Asia – and one-third of all activities related to tourism in Turkey focuses on it, as noticed by the experts of World Travel & Tourism Council (WTCC) in the report City Travel & Tourism Impact 2017 Europe. Moreover, as you can read on the focus, the biggest revenues consequent to tourism – more than 90% – are to impute to foreign travellers.

It has to be said that the tourism sector, in Istanbul and whole Turkey, has suffered and continues to suffer because of the terrorism threat and a worrisome politic situation. Therefore, it’s imperative to inform you about the actual situation. To do that, we refer to the information provided by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation through the Italian website Viaggiare Sicuri. Here are some points to remind:

  • the state of emergency, declared by the Turkish authority after the coup attempt on July 2016, was lifted on 19 July 2018
  • however, the security establishment is visibly strenghtened, with reinforced supervisions especially in the particular caution areas
  • the particular caution areas are Hatay, Gaziantep, Kilis, Sanliurfa, Van, Adiyaman, Diyarbakir, Elazig, Tunceli, Erzincan, Diyarbakir, Bingol, Mardin, Batman, Mus, Bitlis, Agri, Sirnak, Hakkar and Siirt province
  • because of the decree-laws issued during the state of emergency, the arrests, also for foreign citizens and even without clear justifications, are allowed; moreover, even for long periods, is not always permitted to contact one’s own consulate or embassy

You can find precise information about the risks related to a travel in Turkey, among the others, by the American Bureau of Consular Affairs.

It is also as much imperative to inform you about the previsions expressed by the World Travel & Tourism Council in the focus above-mentioned. According to the WTTC experts, from now to 2026, Istanbul will gain ground and will return to the pre-crisis level. Some good news arrive also from the research Mastercard Destination Cities Index 2017, where Istanbul is the tenth most visited city in the world and the third most visited in Europe.

Before saying goodbye, we report you the institutional sources to refer to, useful to learn more about Istanbul and update you about the formalities to enter in Turkey. You can entrust the websites How To Istanbul (edited by the Istanbul Convention & Visitors Bureau) and Home Turkey (edited by the Republic of Turkey Ministry of Culture and Tourism), or the information published in Italian language on the website (a cura dell’Ambasciata di Turchia – Ufficio Cultura e Informazioni – Roma).

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