Welcome Aboard

Dear guests,
The effects of the global financial crisis are being felt in air transport, and many airlines are scaling back the capacity they offer the market by reducing their number of flights.

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) has revised upwards its previously estimated loss of two billion Euros in the sector in 2009. Pointing out that fall in demand in airlines has been sharper than anticipated, IATA President Giovanni Bisignani recently announced that the sector would lose 3.5 billion Euros in 2009.

We have not altered out 2009 targets despite this contraction in the air transport sector. When we note the rate of growth in our passenger numbers in the first quarter, we can see that we are going to reach our designated targets.

Our summer timetable, which goes into effect on 29 March and will bring us one step closer to the broad flight network we have targeted in line with our growth strategy, includes not only newly opened routes but an increase in the number of flights on our existing routes. Flight destinations to which we previously did not fly every day but will now fly seven days a week on the summer timetable include: New Delhi, Mumbai, Chicago, Zagreb, Sarayevo, Nice, Casablanca, Addis Ababa, Khartoum, Dublin, Venice, Basel, Helsinki, Bahrain and Doha on the international routes, and Sinop on the domestic routes.

Among the new foreign destinations being added to our flight network are Dakkar (Senegal), Sao Paulo (Brazil), Benghazi (Libya) and Lvov (Ukraine). The summer timetable, which envisages an increase of 24 percent in seat-kilometers and a 12 percent increase in landings over the previous period, includes flights to a total of 152 destinations, 116 on the international and 36 on the domestic routes.

I am also pleased to announce that flights between Istanbul and Toronto will get under way shortly following a civil aviation agreement  signed recently between Turkey and Canada. All of our pertinent units are engaged in strenuous efforts to complete the required formalities. Our goal is to add the Istanbul-Toronto route, initially at three days a week, to the flight network while the summer timetable is in effect.

This month is of special importance for our children, to whom we have entrusted our future. I would therefore like to take this opportunity to wish all our children a Happy National Sovereignty and Children’s Day on April 23rd.

I thank you for flying Turkish Airlines and wish you a pleasant flight.

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