Turkey is back on the tourist map for UK visitors despite growing tensions between its government and Germany.
The tour operator Thomas Cook said it was seeing a pick-up in demand for Turkish holidays because they were good value for money. The chief executive, Peter Fankhauser, said Turkey was proving attractive at the moment, even though Berlin has warned its citizens to be careful when travelling there.
Visitors shunned the country last year after a failed military coup, which led to the company offering free cancellations to customers with existing bookings.
Overall bookings for summer this year were up 11%, said the company. Greece was also back in favour, with bookings jumping by 22%.
Business for tour operators such as Thomas Cookhas suffered in the Middle East and north Africa in recent years as security issues deterred visitors, with travel firms laying on more holidays to the western Mediterranean to compensate.
However, traffic has bounced back this year in these markets, while other destinations such as Spain have experienced problems. An increase in capacity in Spain is affecting tour operators’ margins in the country, and Thomas Cook said prices were under pressure from the intense competition.
The tour operator reported a 14% rise in revenues for the third quarter and said strong demand for summer bookings would continue into winter, adding that its full-year operating profit would be in line with forecasts. Profit was expected to grow 6% to £326m for the year to September.