We’ve been misquoted again – it keeps happening – apparently we have ‘stated’ that now is quite possibly the best time ever to invest in property in Turkey.  The implication in the entire article in which we were grossly misrepresented – which of course appeared on a property investment website – was that we were not only advocating investors look at Turkey, but that they buy, buy, buy on our advice and without looking back.

If we could, we’d just like to set the record straight.  We’re not an investment portal or an advice site, we’re not qualified experts or even estate agents, (God forbid), we are information providers and more often than not, the information we impart is at least partly based on experience!  Therefore we would never tell anyone what they should or shouldn’t do, and whilst we may share our opinion we certainly don’t expect others to necessarily agree!  Right, all that aside, it’s time to look at the latest Turkish tourism indicators for those property investors who are interested in Turkey – off their own back, with no influence from us!!

The news relating to the growth and development of tourism in Turkey is all very positive indeed – it seems that whilst other nations within the eurozone have been suffering from the strong euro effect, Turkey has taken up the slack and opened its doors, (skies? borders?), to record numbers of Brits, Germans and Russians so far in 2008.  There has been an 18% increase in arrivals from the UK to date in 2008, and in the first 6 months of the year Turkey saw a 16.36% overall increase in arrivals across the country.

All in all it seems that the previously widely held consensus of opinion that Turkey was something of a cheap alternative to ‘better’ locations such as France or Italy perhaps, has been shaken off at long last.  In part this has to do with the positive promotion of the nation that the Turkish tourism authority has entered into, as well as the marketing of the country by estate agents and also property developers.  So nowadays Turkey is actually recognised as meeting the marketing hype and having ‘something for everyone’ – unlike Cyprus which is STILL not a country for all seasons!

A lovely piece written by Nigel Harris, the business development director at Artemis Travel, sums up the change in perspective that has significantly helped Turkey’s travel and tourism economy.  Published in Travel Weekly, here’s an extract from his article:

“Until a few weeks ago, I had never visited Turkey and it had never featured on my wish list. Like many consumers, I had mistakenly perceived it as a cheap low-quality last option.  How delighted I have been to discover how wrong I was and how passionately I now believe we as an industry can maximise on its potential. One of the key things that struck me is Turkey’s magnetism – I am sure once people have been for the first time, they will return.”

Turkey is certainly banking on this fact, i.e., that those who visit once will return, and so are many developers who’re constructing homes in the tourism resorts for sale to those who visit once and wish to keep coming back year after year.  But Turkey is also not becoming complacent now that it has a healthy economic share thanks to tourism generated revenue; far from it in fact.  The country is very well aware that there is massive room for growth stemming from a broad base of factors.  For example, Turkey is really only thought of as a summer holiday location – yet it has fascinating cities with culture, heritage, history and dynamism that can attract visitors all year round, it has a healthy ski season with a number of slowly up and coming resorts which are crying out for investment and promotion, and it has Istanbul which may be well visited already, but which has the capacity to increase numbers from 6 million currently to 60 million – apparently, according to the recent Turkish Airlines organised Turkish Travel Forum.

Being aware of all these factors is not enough of course, but investors need not fear because according to an article in Ekonomist magazine as reported on Hurriyet, there’s a 320 million dollar plan for the active promotion of all of the above facts with 120 million being allocated by the Turkish Tourism Ministry and a further 200 million on its way from the private sector.  In our humble opinion this all bodes so exceptionally well for the long term attraction and appeal of Turkey as an investment location – but that does NOT mean we think you should all go out and buy a property in Turkey!  Clear?!