Turkey shines as growth market for global travel industry

Maher Koubaa

Executive Vice President, Airlines, Middle East, Turkey & Africa, Amadeus

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Travel and tourism in Turkey are looking bright. From the new Istanbul Airport and Turkish Airways’ ascent to growing inbound tourism, the nation stands out in the region. And that’s saying a lot when the backdrop is the Middle East and Africa.

Tourism revenues and visitor numbers in Turkey are on the rise, having doubled between 2004 - 2014 and bouncing back strongly in the last two years from a dip in 2016. By 2023 the aim is to bring in 70 million visitors, driving 70 billion dollars of tourist revenue. 

New Istanbul Airport set to fuel growth

What’s more, the Istanbul Airport, when fully completed in 2025, is projected to manage 200 million passengers. The sheer scale of this new airport is an indication of Turkey’s ambition not only a serious global player but also as a major tourist destination and transport hub. To meet these ambitious targets and truly capitalize on the potential Turkey’s tourist industry offers, technology, and the provision of it, will be key. 

Our close partner Turkish Airlines is looking to grow its business to nearly 120 million passengers a year by 2023. We’re working hand in hand to make this vision a reality and we look forward to playing a key role to help foster future growth for the airline.

A quarter century of shaping travel in Turkey

This year Amadeus celebrated its 25th year operating in Turkey, where it has increased its local team by over 50% in the last five years. This anniversary, combined with the country’s exciting tourism developments are why we held our annual Airline Executive Summit (AES) 2019 in Istanbul, with over 250 representatives across 78 international airlines and 18 technology partners attending. 

An airline platform for new ways of working

We’re helping airlines transform into retailers, innovate with startups and other industry partners, and create seamless traveler journeys. All of this is happening on the Amadeus Airline Platform, allowing airlines large and small to partner and innovate with us and with best-in-class technology providers. We’re simplifying technology for airlines allowing them to focus on providing an exceptional experience to their passengers. And when new trends arise, the platform is agile, so we can deliver business value faster. Best of all, its based on open technology giving airlines the freedom to innovate with us or their partners of choice.

We help our customers manage complex programs by providing them the best technological solutions. Some of the areas we are exploring with our technology for airlines are artificial intelligencemachine learning and big data, which we are equally leveraging to promote travel destinations (DMOs). We work closely together with our airline customers, and increasingly our ecosystem of partners , to drive continued innovation for airlines’ business in turn driving customer loyalty.

The future of travel is bright in Turkey and we are committed to helping our travel industry partners grow their businessed in this dynamic market.


Airline IT, Traveler Experience