Turkish-German airline SunExpress is set to boost Turkish tourism by opening up new destinations this summer, the company said on Tuesday.

The airline said it would expand its flight network between Turkey and Europe by adding new routes from the Turkish resort cities of Antalya and Izmir, including three major cities in the Middle East – Beirut, Erbil (northern Iraq), and Tel Aviv.

“We are expecting to see a ramp-up in demand for travel during the upcoming summer season,” stressed SunExpress CEO Max Kownatzki.

Predicting that widely applied vaccinations in many countries and easy availability of COVID-19 tests will be a driver for tourism growth in the upcoming holiday season, Kownatzki said:

“This will enable all vacationers to travel more safely and will eventually lead to an increase in the number of European tourists visiting Turkey.”

Praising Turkey’s successful initiatives to curb the virus’ spread since it first emerged, Kownatzki said Turkish tourism would pick up considerable momentum and emerge from the crisis stronger, depending on the vaccine rollout’s progress in Turkey and countries in its flight network.

“As a key contributor to the Turkish tourism industry, we are poised to foster this strong comeback,” he added.

SunExpress, which operates direct flights from Turkey to 27 countries and 52 destinations, will offer almost 6 million seats on international routes and 1.8 million seats on domestic routes in the upcoming summer season.