During the Covid-19 process, with the effect of the change in holiday preferences of domestic tourists, the occupancy rate in yachts reached 70% for Ramadan and Eid holidays, while it was reported that nearly 100% occupancy is expected in the June-August period.
In 2020, when the new type of coronavirus (Covid-19) epidemic started, interest in the blue cruise market increased due to the fact that it made isolation possible. Yacht tourism is expected to attract attention this summer season.
Baran Yildirim, the founder and CEO of Viravira.co, told Anadolu Agency (AA) that they worked with high occupancy rates last summer and that the season continued until mid-November.
Yildirim stated that they started this year with 15% occupancy with the bookings transferred from last year, “Our reservations increased in January, February and this month. The occupancy rate of the sector is over 40%.”
According to the Maritime Trade Organization data, Yildirim stated that there are 2 thousand blue cruise boats in Turkey and 1300 of them are registered in their systems. He said, “The reservation rate for the Eid al-Fitr in May and the Eid al-Adha in July is now over 70%. Our industry is unique. Each boat is special in its own right. Most weeks of popular boats in the summer are already full.”
He stated that those who had difficulty finding boats last year made a vacation planning early this year.
Stating that they also received reservations from abroad, Yildirim continued his words as follows:
“The countries that we have booked from abroad in recent months are Ukraine, Russia, England and Canada. We receive high demand from there. We think that the European market will be relieved with the acceleration and widespread use of vaccination. In 2022 we will have more reservations from the European market. Summer 2021 will be the transition season. The domestic reservation increase compensates for the reservation weakness from Europe. We expect almost 100% occupancy in June, July and August, the current picture shows us this. Domestic demand is higher than foreign demand. The sector is filled with local tourists.”
“High capacity boats filled faster”
Stating that groups of friends or families of 6-8 people went on vacation last year, high-capacity boats were not much in demand and they host small groups on these boats, Yildirim said, “Except for our expectations this year, the high capacity boats of 20-25 people filled up faster than the boats with low capacity of 6-10 people. This is surprising. The boats will host guests this year according to their capacity. Capacity utilization rate will be high. We are very hopeful about the season. We hope the season will continue until November.”
“We are working on the system that shows the availability and price information of the boats”
Stating that the lack of a platform with “real-time availability” and “price information” is among the biggest problems of the sector, Yildirim said that they are working on such an application and that they will provide an infrastructure where boat owners can record all the information of the boats.
“A person who will make a boat reservation will be able to see whether a boat is available, the features of the boat, what the price is. This system will be able to be used by agencies and the whole market.”
Source: AA / Translated by Irem Yildiz