Slumping Turkish lira encourages Chinese tourists

The slumping Turkish lira has led to a significant rise of Chinese tourists to Turkey and a shopping spree, travel agencies said.

The slumping Turkish lira has led to a significant rise of Chinese tourists to Turkey and a shopping spree, travel agencies said.

Many tour packages to Turkey from late August to the mid-Autumn Festival on September 24, and the National Day holiday have already been sold out, and the search number of Turkish itineraries soared 150 percent since August 12, said Shanghai-based online travel operator Ctrip.

Luxury shops in big Turkish cities like Istanbul were crowded with tourists with many popular products sold out, and some Chinese group tourists even gave up sightseeing for shopping, said Cao Lingjuan, a Ctrip tour guide of Turkish trips.

Travel review website Mafengwo has also witnessed a big increase of Turkish travel search.

September and October is traditionally the travel peak of Turkey, and the tumbling currency has led to cheaper consumption and shopping in the country, particularly spurring the purchase of luxury products," said Feng Rao, a tourism analyst with Mafengwo.

Chinese tourists made 159,000 trips to Turkey in the first five months of this year, a rise of 96 percent from the same period last year.

In-depth tours ranging between nine and 12 days are most popular among Chinese travelers to Turkey, with a rise of honeymoon couples and young people, Ctrip said.

Hot-air balloon and powered paraglider are the most popular activities among Chinese independent travelers to Turkey.



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