Turkey grants visa exemptions to five Schengen states and United Kingdom

Turkey granted visa-free travel for the nationals of five Schengen countries and Great Britain in an effort to boost tourism revenue. 

The visa exemption will be granted to nationals of Austria, Belgium, the Netherlands, Spain and Poland, as well as the United Kingdom from March 2, the foreign ministry said in a written statement on Thursday. It will be valid for touristic travel to Turkey for 90 days within a 180 day period, it said.

“This step aims at increasing our tourism potential with these countries as well as further developing our trade, economic and cultural relations,” the ministry said. 

The citizens of 78 countries and territories, including Germany, Spain, France, Sweden, Italy, Ireland, Switzerland and Finland, currently do not need visas before traveling to Turkey for tourism or commercial purposes.

Turkey attracted a record number of foreign visitors of over 45 million people in 2019, a rise of 14 percent from the previous year, according to official data. It was the sixth most visited country in the world.

The country’s new tourism strategy targets more than 75 million tourists and $65 billion in revenue by 2023. Europe remains one of the main target markets for Turkish tourism.