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Tunisians reconnect with travel this summer, Turkey among the most popular destinations

13-06-2022

Summer vacation is coming soon and Tunisians are already dreaming of getting away from it all and intend to take advantage of it, after two years of the covid-19 pandemic. The lifting of restrictions due to the health crisis, in particular the reopening of borders and the easing of travel conditions, have enabled them to regain a taste for life and travel.

But this luxury of being able to enjoy the sun, the beach or the blue sky abroad is not given to everyone. With the fallout from the health crisis and the depreciation of the Tunisian dinar (1DT=0.31 €/0.33 $), opting for a holiday outside the country requires significant savings, given the rise in ticket prices, hotel stays, not to mention the expenses during the stay. These difficulties do not seem to slow down a good number of travel enthusiasts, in search of discovery…

So what are the most popular destinations for travelers this summer? What are the reasons behind the rising cost of travel? Would flying be cheaper through a travel agency? Gnetnews has decided to take stock of the subject.

According to Chaima Mehrzi, account manager in a renowned travel agency in Greater Tunis, the agencies’ offer has adapted to the new conditions imposed by the economic and health crises.

“Mid-budget customers have quickly understood that the American and European continents are almost inaccessible given the fall of the dinar, the fall in wages, and inflation. For a couple or a family to go there, it takes no less than 3500 DT in savings per person, with a ticket included from 800 to 1000 DT, accommodation in LPD for 5/6 nights in a hotel 3/4* at 1000DT, and the rest ie 1500DT, by converting them, will have a value of approximately 600 euro”.

As a result, travelers seek to visit countries that do not require a visa since its price is between 141 and 422 DT, plus the travel tax stamp which costs 60DT.

Turkey appears on the list of the most popular destinations for Tunisian customers. With 1 Turkish lira which is equal to 0.18 DT, customers have massively booked for Istanbul during the winter. This summer too, reservations have already started but more to coastal cities, such as Bodrum, Antalya or Trabzon, Chaima informs us.

The cost of organized stays is between 2000 DT to 3000 DT per person, in 3 to 4* hotels. These prices are calculated on the basis of an air ticket price of around 850 and 1400 DT. These sums can be paid for ease, over 6 months, and that’s what most customers do to be able to go there, confirms the account manager.

Egypt also attracts many customers, yet this country requires a visa to enter. Direction Cairo, Sharm El Sheikh, El Ghardaqa, and Aswan, the guaranteed advantage in these cities is first of all the cost of living which is lower compared to Tunisia. A stay in Egypt costs at least 900 DT for 4 nights in low season. This package is calculated on the basis of an air ticket price of 760 DT. The other more touristy cities are more expensive in summer, the price of a week’s stay ranges from 1200 to 3000DT, it all depends on the range of accommodation, and type of solo or group trip.

Traveling is not so easy

We also contacted citizens who are getting ready to fly this summer. Among them, a newly married young couple who have chosen Zanzibar as their destination for their honeymoon.

According to Moez the husband, this is the trip of their dream that he will finally realize in a few days. “I paid 10,000 dinars for two tickets, and a 7-night stay in a 4* hotel, plus a safari in Tanzania. But to be able to go there, I took a bank loan… Without that, it would be difficult to have this sum even with my savings as an engineer with a salary of 2500 DT…”, he confides to us.

For another executive at an international pharmaceutical company, her last trip was a few years ago, in 2019, long before the pandemic. “I flew to Belgium and at that time the euro was not so expensive. It was enough that I received my bonus so that I then planned my next destination. Now I am content with business trips as part of my job. Otherwise, for the summer holidays, I stay in Tunisia”.

Gnetnews has also contacted another retired couple, who have chosen Bodrum as their destination for this summer. “We took advantage of the confinement to make savings which were devoted to this trip. This period helped us a lot to limit our expenses. As retirees, traveling is the best way to break with the routine, and we are happy to have been able to take advantage of it after 2 years of confinement, fear and depression due to Covid-19…”, we said Saida (63 years old).

EB

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