Impact of direct flights on tourist volume: Case of Turkish Airlines

Gurel Cetin, Orhan Akova, Dogan Gursoy, Fazil Kaya
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Accessibility of a destination is an important factor affecting the volume of arrivals to a region. This paper discusses the role of direct flights in development of tourism in Turkey by analyzing Turkish Airlines (THY / TK). THY has transformed into a leading airline by number of international destinations served within the past decade. Parallel to THY, Turkey as a tourist destination also experienced a metronomic rise in international arrivals. Secondary data is used to assess the number of international arrivals to Turkey before and after her air connectivity with certain countries is established. Findings confirm that direct flights to/from generating regions have significant impact on number of arrivals to destinations. Considering availability of direct flights to/from a destination as an important determinant of momentum in tourism development, the cost-benefits analysis of new flight routes would be based on a more holistic approach rather than mere airline revenue and costs.

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