Welcome Aboard

Dear Guests, As it leaves behind a successful year, Turkish Airlines—Turkey’s one and only flagship carrier—has already begun taking steps to further develop its target of surpassing itself in 2007 and consolidating its place among the world’s top airlines.

The true objective of these goals is to raise the satisfaction of you, our valued customers, to the highest possible level. In parallel with its physical growth, Turkish Airlines, which represents Turkey to the world with its solid past and experienced staff and crews, is going to continue to improve the quality of the services it offers its guests with every passing day.
Our goal is to enter the ranks of the world’s top ten airlines. As we move forward confidently along this path, we are continuously expanding our flight network on the one hand, while increasing our seating capacity through the new airplanes joining our fleet in 2006 on the other. With regular flights to 103 destinations abroad, we are continuing to bring Turkey and the world together. We are also planning to increase the number of our passengers from the 17 million we served in 2006 to 20 million in the near future.
During this development process we have also taken our first major step towards joining the Star Alliance, the world’s largest global airline network. Established in 1997, Star Alliance has the distinction of being the first truly global aviation alliance that can offer its customers worldwide reach and a smooth travel experience. Thanks to its rapidly growing membership, Star Alliance is the network that carries the largest number of passengers, with the most connections and a 23% market share. The protocol agreement signed between our airline and Star Alliance on 9 December envisages completion of the full integration process within 16 months. When it has successfully concluded the membership process, Turkish Airlines will become Star’s 21st member, and its logo will appear together with the Star Alliance logo at 841 airports.
Membership in Star Alliance is going to give passengers on our airline, which currently flies to the European, American, Asian and African continents with the 101 aircraft in its fleet, access to more than 17,500 flights daily to 927 cities in 162 countries. Our passengers will also benefit from frequent flyer programs, have access to passenger lounges around the world, and be eligible for the alliance’s special fare programs.
Turkish Airlines’ affiliation with Star Alliance is going to be a big boon for Istanbul as well, the home base of Turkish Airlines. The gateway between Europe and Asia for centuries, Istanbul is now poised to become the ‘Bosphorus Bridge’ of global aviation. Istanbul will become Star Alliance’s main hub at the crossroads of Europe and Asia, contributing not only to Turkish Airlines but to the promotion of Turkey around the world. As the rising star of the world aviation sector, our goal is to become a global trademark. We therefore see ourselves as part of the international competition and are moving confidently ahead to the day when we can compete with the world’s giants. Joining the Star Alliance is therefore a milestone for us, a development of historic importance. Adding more new aircraft to the 101 already in its fleet, Turkish Airlines in 2007 is going to become Turkey’s leading trademark around the world. We have recently captured a growth curve that far exceeds that of the aviation sector, raising our global market share from 0.59 to 1.1% to become Europe’s fastest growing carrier in the first three quarters of 2006. With our modern, young airplanes, we are now the 27th largest airline in the world in terms of fleet. And with our ever-expanding corporate structure, we are going to continue in the years ahead to make quality an integral part of our way of doing business in an effort to provide you, our valued passengers, with better service. In the hope that this historic step taken to join Star Alliance will be auspicious both for our airline and for Turkey, again I would like to wish all of you a happy new year and a joyous Feast of Sacrifice.

Temel KOTİL, Ph.D.
CEO and Member of the Board