Occupancy rates in Turkey’s ski resorts hit 70 pct

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Occupancy rates at the hotels around Turkish skiing centers have hit record levels due to an increase in early booking and demand from foreign tourists, said Hasan Erdem, deputy head of the Association of Turkish Travel Agencies (TÜRSAB), on Nov. 27.

“Early booking is more usual in the accommodation facilities in the Mediterranean and Aegean regions. However, early booking is now taking place at the hotels in the ski resorts. As of today, we reached an occupancy rate of 70 percent in the ski centers,” he told Anadolu Agency.

“There has been high demand for the winter season, especially for the New Year’s Day and semester holiday, from countries such as Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, Oman, United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia. It is an increase of nearly 25 percent in foreign demand,” he added.

The Turkish skiing season has commenced only in Sarıkamış district of the northeastern province of Kars.

In Uludağ, Turkey’s prominent ski resort in the northwestern province of Bursa with a 2,500 meter-altitude, the season starts in December. Having received more than 70,000 visitors, of whom 5,000 were foreigners, in the winter season of 2016-2017, Uludağ has 20 ski runs ranging between 300 meters and 980 meters.

Since the 6,800 beds in the 18 hotels in Uludağ are usually all reserved in the peak season around New Year’s Day, guests will have to stay in the city center and travel to the mountain from by cable cars or shuttles.

Ski resorts of Sarıkamış, Erciyes, Palandöken, Ilgaz and Kartepe also expect record number of tourists in 2019, Erdem said.

“We need to focus on publicity efforts in order to make our ski resorts well known overseas, just as the Davos, Zermatt and Leysin resorts in Switzerland, and Pamporovo resort in Bulgaria are known,” he added.

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