In large parts of Europe you hardly see any Russian tourists anymore. Business trips have also become a thing of the past since the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Still, the country’s residents are looking for ways to leave it. Whether for vacation or – as after the announcement of partial mobilization – to flee.

The flights from Russia went to one country in particular. By far the most popular destination or transit country for Russians this year was Turkey, according to an analysis by the Flightradar 24 portal of data up to September. Of the more than 75,000 international departures from Russia in 2022, 25 percent went to Turkey.

The number of flights from Russia to the country has more than tripled since the beginning of the war. On the other hand, the offer to neighboring countries or to destinations where there is no flight ban, such as Egypt, or to destinations in the Gulf region remained stable.

On the one hand, this is probably due to the fact that Mediterranean bathing destinations in Turkey have always been popular with Russians. In hotels on the Turkish Riviera, they were always among the largest groups of visitors.

Flights to Antalya, for example, peaked this year with 543 weekly departures from Russia in the last week of August.

Another reason is certainly transit flights. A look at the airlines that fly a lot between Russia and Turkey also shows this.

Turkish Airlines, which serves hundreds of destinations around the world through its Istanbul hub, flies the most by far – and has massively increased the number of weekly flights.

At the beginning of the year, Turkish Airlines flew less than 100 times a week from Russia to Turkey. In September, there were more than 300 weekly flights.

Azur Air flies second most with just over 100 flights. However, the increase is significantly higher for the holiday airline than for Turkish Airlines. According to Flightradar numbers, before the war began there were only a handful of weekly flights.

Azur Air is followed by the Russian providers Aeroflot, Red Wings and Rossiya with between 50 and 100 weekly flights.

This article was written by Laura Frommberg

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The original of this article “Airlines flying to Turkey are big winners of the war” comes from aeroTelegraph.