Online travel markets are also undergoing rapid growth in Turkish tourism, with 67 percent of tourists coming to Turkey from European countries purchasing their airline tickets online and 55 percent using online booking for their accommodation. The share of online travel markets in Turkish tourism is estimated at around 15 percent, Dünya daily reported.
The tourism sector has recently come to the brink of a deep divergence with the suspension of Booking.com's activities in Turkey after the Association of Turkish Travel Agencies (TÜRSAB) brought a suit against the online travel agency on the grounds that it has created unfair competition in the market.
Following the court's decision to suspend the site's activities in Turkey, travel agencies stood against the online reservation system in tourism, while accommodation services stood by the online system.
Regarding the figures, while the online travel market reached $590 billion in 2016, it is expected to exceed $800 billion in 2020.
More than $100 billion of the turnover in the world's online travel market is made through mobile channels. In 2020, this amount will exceed $200 billion while mobile phone usage is expected to increase by 70 percent. Today, the largest transaction volume in the world online travel market is concentrated in North America, Asia-Pacific and Western Europe, which together have a share of about 30 percent in the market.
In addition to Booking.com, which operates under U.S.-based Priceline Group, there are other major players in the online travel market, such as the Expedia Group, TripAdvisor and Chinese Ctrip Group.
Expedia Inc. leads the market with a turnover of $60.8 billion, followed by Priceline Group with $55.5 billion. The total market share of the two companies rose to 65 percent in 2015 from 38 percent in 2011. In 2016, Google also generated $12.2 billion in online travel market revenue thanks to its ads, which corresponds to about one-third of Turkey's tourism revenue for that same year.