Jet2 announces new destination to Turkey from Belfast International

British travel and holiday company Jet2.com and Jet2holidays has announced a new route from Belfast International Airport for Summer 2018, with weekly flights to Dalaman in Turkey.

The new flights to Dalaman, popularly known as ‘Turquoise Coast,’ will depart every Tuesday from June 26 until September 25, 2018. Dalaman is the second new Turkish destination from the airport for next summer, with a new route to Antalya also planned.

Earlier this year, Jet2 launched its Summer 18 programme with eight new destinations. This has now increased to nine brand new destinations with the addition of Dalaman, a sought-for holiday destination for its pristine beaches and coastal scenery. Other new destinations for Summer 18 include Almeria, Crete, Madeira, Malta, Naples, Paphos and Rhodes. With the addition of the new routes, Jet2 will operate to 23 destinations from Belfast International Airport next summer. Tickets are available to book at www.jet2.com or www.jet2holidays.com.

Steve Heapy, CEO of Jet2.com and Jet2holidays said: ‘The Dalaman region offers something for everyone thanks to its stunning coastline and beaches, its array of fabulous resorts, and its rich history. We are confident that Dalaman will be very popular with Northern Ireland holidaymakers, just as our other Turkish destination of Antalya is already proving to be. Turkey is the perfect holiday hotspot and is seeing a huge surge in popularity thanks to its great weather and culture, as well as the fantastic value it offers.

‘This latest new destination is part of our biggest ever summer programme from Belfast International Airport. Next summer we will operate to 23 destinations and increase capacity by 41%, and to support that growth we are investing in 30 new jobs and the addition of a Boeing 737-800 aircraft. Such success is only possible by looking after customers, and our continued focus on offering a VIP customer service, great value package holidays and family friendly flights is clearly paying off, as evidenced by the fact that Jet2holidays became the second largest tour operator in the UK just last month.’

Graham Keddie, Managing Director, BIA, said: ‘Turkey has always been a great destination from Belfast International Airport and we are confident the addition of Dalaman, alongside Antalya, will be extremely popular with local holidaymakers.’

As part of the expansion, Jet2 will add a new Boeing 737-800 aircraft to the fleet at Belfast International to support a 41 percent increase in capacity, which represents over 400,000 seats on sale for Summer 18, the company said.

Thomas Cook announces weekly flights from Norwich

Thomas Cook, one of the UK’s leading holiday companies, has said it will restart its services from Norwich Airport starting summer 2018, with the launch of the city’s only direct flight to Turkey.

The new service comes following an increase in demand for holiday breaks to Turkey. It was the third most popular destination for British holidaymakers, after Spain and Greece, and package holiday bookings were up 10 percent compared to last year, Norwich Airport said in a release.

Starting May 23, 2018, Thomas Cook will operate a weekly flight on Wednesdays from Norwich to Dalaman, giving holidaymakers in the Norfolk area more choice for summer break next year. Dalaman is a cultural hotspot located on the Turquoise Coast, with attractive beaches and hidden coves, and near to traveller attractions such as Butterfly Valley and the crenulated walls of 16th-century Marmaris Castle.

Christoph Debus, Chief Airlines Officer at Thomas Cook Airlines, said: ‘We are delighted to once again be offering holidaymakers in the Norwich area the ease of flying from their local airport. Whether you’re travelling as a family, couple or with friends, Turkey offers something for everyone and we look forward to making sure our customers have a holiday to remember next summer with the launch of our new weekly flight to Dalaman.’

Richard Pace, managing director of Norwich Airport, said: ‘It’s great to have Thomas Cook back at Norwich with such a brilliant offer for package holidays and flights to Turkey. I’m sure this will be a popular destination for summer 2018 and gives local people even more choice for a sunshine getaway.’

Thomas Cook is offering package holidays from Norwich to Dalaman for seven nights with prices from £407 per person, staying on a bed and breakfast basis at the SunConnect Liberty Hisaronu, departing from Norwich on May 23, 2018. Flight only services are available with prices starting from £49.99 per person based on a one way journey and excluding luggage and other optional extras. The service will be operated from May 23, 2018 until October 3, 2018.

Flight-only and package holiday options are available to book now at https://www.thomascook.com/, the airport said.

Monarch to introduce new security measures for flights from Turkey to UK

Monarch, the UK-based European regional airline, has said that it will introduce additional security measures at Antalya and Dalaman airports so that the currently restricted personal electronic devices can be allowed in the cabin on its flights from those airports to the UK.

The announcement comes as the UK government is lifting the ban on carrying electronic devices in hand luggage from some airports and on some flights from Turkey to the UK, subject to additional security measures.

‘Currently the restrictions still apply. We will inform our customers when this changes,’ the airline said in a release.

Accordingly, electronic items including laptops, iPads, tablets and e-readers will need to be switched off (not in sleep or standby mode), packed into hold luggage and checked in. These electronic items will not be allowed in the aircraft cabin with the passenger. In addition, power banks and portable power sources or spare and separate device batteries for phones, laptops, tablets and E-readers larger than 16cm x 9.3cm x 1.5cm are not allowed at all on the flight from Turkey, either in the cabin or hold luggage.

There will be additional searches at the gate and any items found that are not allowed in the cabin under the new security measures will be taken and placed in the hold, the airline said.

To facilitate the new restrictions, the airline will increase the paid for hold luggage allowance by three kilograms free of charge to allow for the additional weight of electrical items on inbound flights, subject to a maximum of 26 kg per bag. This will be automatically added to the baggage allowance.

The airline also recommends insurance coverage by passengers for all belongings, including electronic items, Monarch said, adding that it will not accept liability for any damage to or loss of electrical gadgets in hold luggage. Locking the luggage is also recommended, it added.

As a result of the new security measures, online check in will not be available on Monarch flights from Turkey to the UK. Check in will be at the airport only. Check in for flights from Turkey to the UK will open three hours before departure and close 60 minutes before departure.

Flights from the UK to Turkey are not subject to these restrictions – so passengers are free to travel with their electronic items to Turkey, the airline noted.

VisitBritain and Turkish Airlines partner to attract visitors to Britain

UK tourism board VisitBritain and Turkish Airlines have announced a new global partnership to attract more international visitors to Britain, with a focus across the airline’s five regional airports in the UK including Birmingham.

As part of the partnership, VisitBritain and Turkish Airlines will launch an international marketing campaign over the next 12 months, which will initially focus on Indian, Saudi Arabian and other Gulf markets. Showing aspects that make Britain a much sought-for destination, the campaign is aimed at inspiring global tourists ad travellers to explore all the nations and regions of Britain through the airline’s current gateways.

VisitBritain Chief Executive Sally Balcombe said: ‘We are very pleased to be the first national tourist body to develop a global partnership marketing campaign with Turkish Airlines. There are significant growth opportunities in the markets served by Turkish Airlines, including the emerging market of Saudi Arabia, using the airline’s global connectivity and rapidly expanding network. This partnership will also allow us to target our marketing to inspire more international visitors to come and explore all the nations and regions of Britain, so we can continue to create jobs and deliver our ambitious plans for growth.’

Turkish Airlines Chief Marketing Officer Mr Ahmet Olmustur said: ‘This is an incredibly exciting opportunity for Turkish Airlines and we are delighted to be teaming up with such an acknowledged and reputable brand as VisitBritain. The travel market in the UK continues to go from strength-to-strength and therefore we strongly believe this partnership will further enhance visitor numbers in the UK in the coming year. Turkish Airlines is always investing in the UK and, along with partnerships such as this, we hope to see big inroads being made in terms of visitor numbers.’

It is the first time that Turkish Airlines is partnering with a national tourist board for a tourism promotion campaign. Turkish Airlines is set to move to its new hub at Istanbul New Airport in 2018 with nearly 20 million passengers a year expected to be flying through the new airport by 2020. Turkish Airlines was recently chosen as the Best Airline in Europe for the fifth year running by the Skytrax Passenger survey.

 

OSKA Travel offers holiday package to Turkey from Bournemouth

UK’s OSKA Travel, a specialised tour operator with a focus on cultural roundtrips in the Mediterranean region and central Europe, will be offering holiday packages to Turkey from Bournemouth Airport this year, the airport said in a release.

Two holiday options will be available from Bournemouth, including a seven-night all-inclusive holiday to a 5-star hotel from £449 per person, or a one-week escorted tour around the Turkish Riviera, staying in 4/5 star hotels on a B&B basis from £249 per person.

Paul Knight, managing director of Bournemouth Airport, said: ‘We are delighted to welcome OSKA Travel to Bournemouth Airport. Their holidays offer excellent value for money and I’m sure they will prove to be really popular with our passengers. We’re looking to provide more options and services for customers using our airport and this will extend our connections further into Europe.’

Andreas F. Forsthuber of OSKA Travel said: ‘We are really excited to add a regional airport such as Bournemouth to our portfolio. At KENBA Group, the owner of OSKA Travel, we have handled more than 80,000 passengers from six different countries in 2012 and 2013.

‘We are really looking forward to welcoming guests from Bournemouth Airport in Turkey – and we are sure they will love this tour. It might well be their first, but it will definitely not be their last trip’.

With its rich history, Turkey offers a fascinating glimpse into the past, but also presents its guests with a range of good restaurants, traditional markets and a lively nightlife.

OSKA also offer ‘Escorted Tour’ holidays for those who want to explore the region. Holidaymakers can travel through the Taurus Mountains and visit Pamukkale, a UNESCO World Heritage site. Visitors can also experience a typical carpet village, the preserved ruins of Parga, or enjoy a sightseeing tour of Antalya.

Flights depart from Bournemouth Airport on April 10, 17 and 24, the airport said.

Prestwick Airport to operate new Turkish charter flights

Prestwick Airport in Scotland has won its first new flights after it was acquired by the Scottish Government last month.

According to a report by the Scotsman, no-frills carrier, Oska Travel, will operate Turkish charter services to Antalya in March. The charter flights from the airport come after Holidays4U ended services to Dalaman in Turkey about two years ago.

Oska, which operates 25 European routes from Prestwick, will operate three return flights in March for the week-long trips, which included tours of Kemer, Pamukkale, Tavas and Perga.

Prestwick Airport spokeswoman, Paula Horne, said: ‘We are delighted to have secured these Oska Travel tours from Prestwick this March.

‘It allows us to put yet another Mediterranean destination on our departure board, emphasising once again that Prestwick is Scotland’s low-cost gateway to year-round sunshine.’

Andreas Forsthuber, director of Oska Travel owners, the Kenba group, said: ‘We are very excited to add Prestwick to our portfolio and are also delighted to offer a one-week voyage of discovery to the fabulous Turkish Riviera.

‘We are convinced Scots will love this tour.’

Chief executive, Stuart Patrick, said: ‘Despite assurances that it would happen, we have as yet had no reply from the Scottish Government regarding a meeting to allay our concerns about the negative effect on Glasgow Airport of the Prestwick purchase.

‘In buying Glasgow Prestwick Airport, the Scottish ministers now have a direct stake in the performance of the airport industry in the Central Belt of Scotland.

‘We are concerned that this may have detrimental effects on the performance of Glasgow International Airport.’

The announcement came as Glasgow Chamber of Commerce renewed its call for a meeting with ministers over the airport sale.

The Scottish Government took over Prestwick for GBP1 after New Zealand owners, Infratil, threatened to shut it following a major reduction in passenger numbers. The government had said that it will be focusing on working for the airport’s successful future.

UK Foreign Office extends warning on Turkey

The UK’s Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) has repeated a warning for travellers intending to visit Turkey.

The latest warning from the FCO has been issued with the expectation that further demonstrations are to take place in cities across the country. There have also been reports that riot police have entered Istanbul’s Taksim Square, a main focus point in the two-week-long demonstration. The BBC has reported the use of tear gas and water cannon by the authorities, despite Turkey’s prime minister, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, having agreed to a meeting tomorrow with organisers of the protest.

The FCO has warned that two major pro-government rallies are scheduled to take place in Ankara and Istanbul this Saturday and Sunday (June 15 and 16) and in a statement it said, ‘Further demonstrations remain possible in cities across Turkey, week commencing June 10. Police may continue to use tear gas and water cannons to disperse protestors. We advise British Nationals to avoid all demonstrations.’

Despite the FCO’s warning, Turkey’s Ministry of Culture and Tourism has said that tourists are safe to visit the country, with a spokesperson saying, ‘There are currently no problems being experienced with either transport or security in Istanbul or any of our tourism regions and thus every sort of touristic activity is carrying on as normal. Flights in and out of Turkey have not been affected by these events and are running as scheduled.

‘The Turkish Ministry of Culture and Tourism continues to take every precaution regarding the safety of visitors to the country.’

The demonstrations, which were originally in protest at Turkish government plans to build on Taksim Square’s Gezi Park, have now adopted a wider agenda against perceived government authoritarianism and restrictions on sales of alcohol.

FCO issues warning for UK travellers to Turkey

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO), the government authority that is responsible for providing assistance for British tourists overseas, has issued a travel warning for UK citizens intending to visit Turkey.

The warning comes in the wake of a wave of anti-government demonstrations that have been taking place over the weekend with escalating violence both from the protestors and the law enforcement officers. With in-excess of 1,700 people arrested during protests that have spread to 67 Turkish towns and cities, the FCO has advised all British nationals that visit the country to avoid any areas where demonstrations are taking place for their own safety.

The major cities of Istanbul and Ankara have witnessed the bulk of the violence, which first broke out on Friday. The police have responded to missiles thrown from the crowds and the burning of cars with tear gas and water cannons. As a result of the violence, the Turkish Doctor’s Association said that its members have treated in excess of 484 wounded protestors.

An update of the FCO’s travel advice that was issued on Saturday said, ‘Following recent demonstrations in Istanbul and other cities in Turkey, in which police used tear gas and water cannons, the possibility of further demonstrations remains high. We advise British nationals to avoid all demonstrations.’

The protest grew out of an initial peaceful gathering in Gezi Park, Istanbul, as a demonstration against the park being developed to create a shopping centre. However, as the protest gained momentum it was joined by large crowds, angry at the government’s increasingly authoritarian stance, perceived as Islamist, and which has also seen recent restrictions on the sale of alcohol.

 

Indulge Your Family with Holidays in Cyprus and Turkey

There’s nothing like giving the whole family something to look forward to. With these fabulous five star hotels in Cyprus and Turkey, there’s something for every member of your family to enjoy. Why not book a holiday with your loved ones and make memories that will remain with you all forever?

The Hotel Elysium, Paphos

This five star wonder is situated on a Mediterranean beach, looking out onto a blissful, blue paradise. Perfect for the whole family, it boasts a fabulous spa with some divine all-over-body treatments, a diving school, car rental, a hairdressing salon, 6 restaurants, and several top range shops amongst other exciting facilities.

With a choice of many types of room, from deluxe rooms to family suites, maisonettes, studios and villas, there is space to make every family happy on holiday. There are plenty of amenities, including LCD TV, luxurious bathrobes and slippers, and complimentary toiletries.

Find out more about Elysium Hotel, Paphos at Jet2holidays.com

Four Seasons, Limassol

With its 20th anniversary in 2013, the Four Seasons is a five star hotel in a class of its own. The pinnacle of luxury, this hotel has 304 rooms, 6 restaurants – several of which are award winning – and 4 bars, while its placement on a superbly clean Blue Flag awarded beach makes it extra special. It also hosts a spa facility featuring seaweed body masks and anti-ageing treatments, and a fully equipped sports and fitness centre.

With accommodation featuring luxury en suite facilities, huge LCD TVs, wireless internet, play stations, baby monitoring devices and private balconies, the Four Seasons is fully aware of the needs of a family and there is plenty of room – the more, the merrier!

Find out more about Four Seasons, Limassol at Jet2holidays.com

Hilton Resort & Spa, Dalaman

If you’ve ever fancied living in the lap of luxury, Dalaman’s Hilton Resort is it. For family indulgence, a lovely open suite with its own private balcony could be just the ticket.

Dining in style is at the fore with a variety of restaurants, including the TAO, with contemporary Far Eastern and Asian meals, all day dining at the Pianoforte, Italian delicacies to be enjoyed at the Alize and a fine rooftop bar for the evenings.

Not only is there a well-equipped fitness centre and a top range spa, there are many other activities available to guests including horse riding, water skiing, and of course, swimming in the Dead Sea is a highly therapeutic activity, recommended for centuries by travellers.

Find out more about Hilton resort & spa, Dalaman at Jet2holidays.com

These hotels can be booked through a number of travel operators, including package deal specialists Jet2holidays. There’s no excuse not to!

Brits head to Turkey as tourism booms

Ranked the sixth most visited country in the world by the UN World Tourism Organisation, Turkey Holidays are becoming increasingly popular with worldwide travellers. Given the current economic climate, it comes as no surprise that more and more tourists are choosing to travel to Turkey, thanks to its affordable lifestyle, lively culture and pristine beaches.

Sandwiched between Greece and Georgia, Turkey is often considered to be the crossroads of Europe and Asia and is famous for its lively Mediterranean culture and natural beauty. The picturesque Turquoise Coast is just what you’d expect – endless white sand beaches, luxury resorts and relaxing gulet cruises. With Dalman holidays more affordable than ever, there’s no time like the present to escape a cold winter and set sail along the Turkish coast.

The boom in Turkey’s popularity is largely due to countries such as Germany, Russia and the UK. In 2011, 2.6 million British tourists travelled to Turkey, with figures expected to rise even more this year – 2 million Brits had already visited the country by September 2012.

So just why are UK travellers flocking to Turkey? Compared to its European counterparts, Turkey offers all the postcard-worthy views and idyllic holiday lifestyle, but minus the hefty price tag associated with hotspots like Paris, Rome and the Greek Islands. With UNESCO heritage sites nestled amongst seaside villages, Turkey is full of historic charm – the impressive array of mosques are legendary masterpieces; the ancient cities full of local life; the centuries-old ruins largely left untouched.

Whether it’s a family holiday or a romantic rendezvous, Turkey has something for everyone, and every budget. To the west, Bodrum sits on the pristine Aegean Coast and is one of the most popular resorts in Turkey. Aside from the crystal clear waters, you can also find one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, the Mausoleum at Halicarnassus, a tomb built in 350BC. Shopping is abundant, and haggling for bargains a given.

A little further south sits Dalaman – a region filled with mud baths, ancient ruins and traditional cruises. A popular destination for British sun seekers, Dalaman offers a luxury lifestyle with affordable prices. The ever-popular gulet cruises are a unique way to take in the Turkish Riveria. A single-mast wooden ship, a gulet cruise allows you to sit back, relax and let the crew do the hard work. Indulge in fresh seafood, sunbake the day away and take a dip in the turquoise waters.

So whatever is on your Turkish itinerary, you’re sure to have an amazing, once-in-a-lifetime holiday – after all, 2.6 million Brits can’t be wrong.