Turkish ministry kicking off early booking season in January

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Add Date : 25.01.2011 10:37

Turkish ministry kicking off early booking season in January

The 2011 early booking term will start Thursday. A publicity official from the Tourism Ministry says this year's motto is 'Everybody Deserves a Vacation.'
A new booking campaign that is meant to resuscitate domestic tourism by providing advantageous payment opportunities to Turks and foreign tourists will start Thursday, according to the Tourism Ministry and a tourism association.
“The early start of the campaign will provide Turkish consumers with the opportunity to buy cheap but high quality service,” Cumhur Güven Taşbaşı, the ministry’s publicity director,” recently told Anatolia news agency.
“Our motto is ‘Everybody Deserves a Vacation’ and one of the most important topics the campaign underlines is insurance. The travels of those benefiting from the campaign will be covered by travel insurance. Consumers will be allowed to change or cancel their travels until the last 72 hours before their trip. This is a very important service. Travel insurance will be within the scope of the campaign’s coverage. All the tour operators joining in the early booking campaign with us must provide this option,” Taşbaşı said.
The ministry is being joined in the campaign by the Turkish Association of Travel Agents, or TURSAB.
Because some tour operators have already started their early bookings, the ministry decided to announce an earlier date for its campaign so as to prevent unfair competition, the ministry representative said.
He also said they had started the campaign together with the tour operators and that each of them would offer different options during the campaign term. The term will end May 31, at which point there will be no further booking campaigns, Taşbaşı said.
During the campaign, airlines will provide flight promotions and the national flagship carrier, Turkish Airlines, or THY, will be part of the endeavor, Taşbaşı said.
He also said participating banks would offer many advantageous packages to their customers, including 35 or 40 percent discounts on tour packages. “When the campaign starts, these rates could become a little bit higher.”
According to a poll conducted of TÜRSAB member tour operators, bookings made between February and May increased by 70 percent last year. Taşbaşı said they had similar expectations for this year in the domestic tourism market. Tuesday, January 18, 2011ANKARA – Anatolia News Agency