Two years ago, while I was at the height of seeking escape from paid work life and Istanbul, I intended to take over some hotel business, first in Ayvalık and then in Dalyan. We gave up both attempts at the last minute due to minor grits.

When we think about it now, giving up with these investment ideas has been the best investment we have made. The tourism industry of Turkey which has significantly slowed down during last 2 years due to rise of terrorism threat, is now at the blink of a total collapse, by the blocking of booking.com. 80% -90% of the reservations of an average small hotel used to come from booking.com, in Turkey.

With the development of the Internet, the number of travel agencies in the USA has decreased by nearly half in the past 16 years. This is the rule of thumb, new web based disruptive business models are outdating the older ones.

On the other hand, Booking.com was blocked in Turkey over a demand by the local tourism agencies organization (TÜRSAB) I found an official statement regarding the issue broke into the TÜRSAB website. as follows:

TURSAB BOOKINGCOM DECLERATION

Speaking of the legal system, for example, in chapter I highlighted, the Competition Authority of Turkey’s decision is being credited. I am dubious on this though: Isn’t it also the Competition Authority’s ultimate goal to create a competitive environment to the benefit of society, to ensure and maintain competition in economic activities? Will the model, where small hotel owners will have difficulty selling rooms and the market share will shift to the big tour companies that are members of TÜRSAB, will maintain the competition, with the absence of booking.com? Or from the perspective of customers, will the consumer, who can easily find accommodation according to his budget and taste through booking.com, be able to keep on exercising benefits of competition, when he now has to slip on the expensive suggestions of big tour companies?

TURSAB'ın Booking.com'un Kapatılmasından Epey Mutlu Olduğu Anlaşılıyor

How the event will affect the Turkish Tourism industry in the face of international competition … It is a different topic. There are many comments in the form of “Tourism was already crying blood, they nailed the coffin”. But I think the best comment yesterday made by the chairman of TÜRSAB himself. TÜRSAB chief criticized the decision that Antalya governorship ban of drinking alcohol in open areas last week, and did not leave me a lot of comment beyond:

TURSAB ALCOHOL BAN

Not only in Antalya, in Turkey, and even in your organization Mr. President, I think we are already being managed by a TOWN MINDSET quite long some time now.

Note: A few years ago, I met with one of Turkey’s most famous travel writers. In our short interview, he seemed to take his own humble suggestions on how to become a successful travel writer. His most important recommendation was: “Absoulutely no bad wording about no one, even it is the worst”

I think someone who calls himself a travel writer and acts as a opinion leader, who doesn’t have a word about such an huge event like booking.com block decison of Turkey, is neither a travel writer nor an opinion leader.

Gokhan Toka
Digital Marketing Professional at Gokhan Toka
Digital marketing professional, data analytics junkie, snowboarding addict, in love with mountains, crazy about horror cinema and particularly 80s horror, die hard traveler, freelancer, dad

...and #beer
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