People, Travel

Turkey Tours’ Capacity Cut, Prices Remain the Same

Turkey Tours’ Capacity Cut, Prices Remain the SameTurkey Tours’ Capacity Cut, Prices Remain the Same

In order to ease into the resumption of tours to Turkey, Iranian travel agencies have announced reductions in capacity.

Tour capacities have been cut by 50%, reported.

Iran lifted the ban on tours to the neighboring country earlier this week after a trip to Turkey on Friday by Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif.

The ban was placed following an attempt by a faction of the Turkish military to topple the country’s ruling party on July 15.

“The reduction in capacity is necessary to ensure the market is not disrupted,” said Gholamreza Abazari, chairman of the board of Tehran Tour and Travel Agencies Association.

“Security conditions in Turkey have naturally had an impact on demand, but Turkey remains a top destination for Iranian tourists, so we have to ease back into the market.”

Many argue that the lack of political stability in Turkey combined with safety concerns should compel travel agencies to reduce their prices, but Abazari says the prices remain the same.

“Turkish officials believe everything is fine and that there are no threats to tourists, so airlines and hotels have not reduced their prices, which means we can’t lower our fees either due to our agreements with Turkish parties,” he said.

Last month, Turkey announced an unprecedented three-month state of emergency, though Ankara says it is only to ensure there is no repeat of the coup attempt.

Tour operators say they have incurred over 180 billion rials ($5.1 million) in losses as a result of the ban.

Tour capacities are expected to return to normal at the end of the Iranian month of Shahrivar (September 21).

Following the imposition of the ban, travel agencies began promoting alternative destinations such as Georgia and Bulgaria, which were being sold at a slightly higher rate than normal.

With the lifting of the ban, however, the prices of the tours have returned to normal and in some cases have even dropped below their usual rates.