Turkish Airline’s global passenger traffic hits 75.2m in 2018

Yunus Ozbek, General Manager, Turkish Airline, Lagos (L) and Mehmet Asik, GM, Abuja operations at a press conference in Lagos on Thursday

…to increase fleet from 336 to 500 aircraft in five years

…cargo tons increase to 1m annually

Posted by Sade Williams

Turkish airline said on Thursday, it airlifted 75.2 million passengers to and from its over 307 destinations in 2018.

This is just as the airline disclosed that it plans to increase its fleet to 500 from the present 336 aircraft, in the next five years, adding that the newer the fleet the more efficient it is.

Mehmet Asik, General Manager, Abuja operations of the airline, who spoke alongside Yunus Ozbek, General Manager, Turkish Airline, Lagos, at a press conference on the activities of the airline globally, also said it prioritise safety above everything in the company, adding that it has also grounded the nine MAX 8 aircraft in the fleet.

“The fleet age is very important to us, Turkish airline fleet is one of the youngest in the world, the newer the fleet the more efficient it is, we operate to 307 destinations n the world, we have 336 aircraft in our fleet and in the next years, we plan to increase the fleet to approximately 500”, he said.

On cargo operations, he said the traffic grew from 145,000 tons in 2005 to 1 million tons annually in 2018, adding that it records the highest tons from Lagos where it operates three weekly flights.

Speaking on products and services, Asik said its Business Class catering is the best in the world while the economy catering is number two.

“We always try to keep the travel experience in the Business Class as the best. We have 350 movies in in-flight, we have free on board WI-FI apart from the flying Chef who prepares passengers’ meal onboard, this is why we have the best catering in the world.

“We have the corporate club, which offers benefits such as discount, incentives and excess baggage. We also have the Miles and Smiles where we reward frequent flyers and loyal customers. There is also the Istanbul Tour for transit passengers.. In this programme, we take passengers on sightseeing of historical places in Istanbul and offer them free breakfast and lunch before joining their flights. We fly to more countries in the world than any other airline, so in terms of international destinations, we are number one.

“Between 2011 and 2016, we won Europe’s best airline for 6 years in a row by SKYTRAX, our Lounge in Istanbul is bigger than some airports, the second one would be opened for passengers soon,  airport hosted 68 million passengers in 2018, 46 million tourists visited Istanbul in 2018. The new airport, which is being constructed in for phases has capacity for 90 million passengers annually and would in few years increase to 200 million”, he added.

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