KEY Focus points


Turkey has chosen to broaden the list of nations whose citizens can enter visa-free.

Last week, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan of Türkiye issued a decree stating that citizens from six more countries will gain entry without the need for visa procedures.

The following is the roster of countries whose citizens can now enter Türkiye without the necessity of obtaining a visa :

  • United Arab Emirates
  • Saudi Arabia
  • The United States
  • Canada
  • Bahrain
  • Oman


As per Turkish authorities, the choice to waive visa requirements for citizens of the aforementioned six countries is a deliberate effort to draw increased visitors to the nation and fortify diplomatic relations.

The latest regulations permit citizens from the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, the United States, Canada, Bahrain, and Oman to stay in Türkiye for a maximum of 90 days within any 180-day period without requiring a visa for travel purposes upon arrival.

However, individuals from these countries intending to extend their stay in Türkiye for study or work reasons must adhere to the existing regulations and go through the standard visa application process.

By granting visa-free access to residents of these six nations, Türkiye aims to exceed the tourism figures observed before the onset of the pandemic.

According to Hurriyet Daily News, tourism operators have enthusiastically embraced the decision. The Black Sea Tourism Operators Association anticipates a surge in visitor numbers as a positive outcome of this move.

According to Murat Toktaş, president of the Black Sea Tourism Operators Association, the most significant surge is expected in the number of visitors from Gulf countries, as reported by Hurriyet.

He emphasized that tourists are likely to concentrate their visits on Istanbul, underscoring an anticipated 50% surge across the entire tourism sector.

Data from the Turkish Ministry of Tourism reveals a notable surge in tourist arrivals from Saudi Arabia, marking one of the highest increases for the current year.

Between January and November of the current year, Türkiye welcomed 784,000 visitors from Saudi Arabia, marking a significant 70% increase compared to the same period last year.

During the first 11 months of this year, approximately 127,000 visitors from the United Arab Emirates and 57,000 visitors from Bahrain chose Türkiye as their tourism destination, as revealed by the Ministry.

Moreover, there was a noticeable surge in visitors from the United States and Canada this year. Arrivals from the US witnessed a remarkable 33.4% increase, while arrivals from Canada recorded a substantial 27% rise.

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