We are proud to build strong relationships with every one of our partners and suppliers. These meaningful connections ultimately allow us to provide the most beneficial fares to our clients, guaranteeing them the best value for money and great flexibility when it comes to travel.
One such supplier is Turkish Airlines, Turkey’s largest carrier. The airline offers passengers an unrivalled route network to 126 countries across the globe, with all the benefits of its modern fleet, exceptional customer service and supreme onboard comfort.
Several members of the Diversity Travel team recently went on a FAM trip to Istanbul, courtesy of Turkish Airlines. The purpose of the long weekend was to showcase the airline’s offering to travellers and demonstrate the service that passengers can expect when flying with them. We caught up with a couple of our team members to find out the highlights of their trip and their experience travelling with the airline.
How was your trip to Istanbul?
Ruth: It was a really great trip and experience. The people there were very nice, and it was a busy city with a lot of hustle and bustle. We got to see so much during the time that we were there, as well as being allowed to wander through the city and experience it in our own time.
Jess: The trip was amazing. Turkish Airlines were able to show us so much of the city in a small amount of time. It was such a good experience to be able to see a vast amount of the city with a tour guide (Istanbul is huge!). Without the guide, I would personally have struggled to find everything and learn so much about the city’s history in just two days.
What did you do during your time there?
Jess: On Friday, Turkish Airlines provided us with a tour guide and a minibus. We visited the Grand Bazaar, which has 4000 market stalls, and were able to shop there and have a traditional Turkish lunch in the market restaurant. We then went over to the Blue Mosque and were able to look around inside. After this, we went across the road to Hagia Sophia and again, we were given a tour. At night, we drove to the other side of the river and went to a fish restaurant hosted by Turkish Airlines. Some members of our group then went on to enjoy some of the rooftop bars of the city!
On the Saturday, we had free time to go and explore. Ruth and I went for a walk around the spice markets and the Saturday markets near the river. While we sampled the street food there, some other members of the group went to the traditional Turkish Baths and had massages. In the evening, we boarded a private yacht, arranged especially for Diversity Travel, which took us down the river to watch the sunset. The yacht took us directly to our restaurant where we ate dinner – a set menu of traditional Turkish meals.
On Sunday, we went straight to the new airport. We were given a tour of check-in, from Business to Economy, and then had the chance to experience the Business Class lounge.
What were the highlights?
Ruth: The highlight for me was going through the markets and trying out all of the great food!
Jess: The highlights for me would be getting to meet members of the team that I don’t normally work with, especially Kahalia from the U.S. Rushmore team. The private yacht was also amazing, something I can’t imagine I’ll be doing again anytime soon. Finally, I’d say that the Business Class lounge in Istanbul was on another level of luxury, so that was an added bonus!
Would you visit again?
Ruth: I would definitely visit again. It’s such a big, busy city, so there’d still be so much to explore.
Jess: I think I would go again for a short weekend away in the summer to try and see more of the city – it was so big that we didn’t have time to see everything!
Ruth: The best food was the sea bass that we had on the first night. On the second night, we had lovely fresh pitta breads with roasted aubergine and spicy yoghurt for starters, as well as lots of other small dishes.
Jess: The best food would have to be the meal we ate on Saturday night – we had fresh bread/naans, lamb koftas, chicken wings, lamb flatbreads and chicken with wraps. The veg is so good in Turkey that it makes everything tasty!
What was it like flying with Turkish Airlines?
Ruth: The flight experience was great! I got upgraded on the outbound flight and the service was incredible. Both lounges were really nice and made the travelling experience much more relaxing.
Jess: I flew economy both ways but I had emergency exit seats, so I had extra leg room. The flight was faultless, and the food was excellent. We had alcohol served on board too, with a large selection of choice. The in-flight entertainment was spot on – they had a huge variety of movies, TV shows, audio books and games with plenty of choice for everyone, from comedy and drama to action and kids. The cabin crew were also faultless. They were so attentive and always happy to bring drinks, pillows and blankets if need be.
The lounge experience in Istanbul was amazing. With priority, we were able to use a separate entrance into the airport with no queues and a considerably shorter wait at security. The lounge was very high-end; it had a cinema room, hotel rooms for stopovers longer than 4 hours, great quantities of food cooked by chefs, unlimited chilled soft drinks, and wine stands and alcohol cupboards that you could help yourself to (I wouldn’t have minded being delayed for an hour or two). The lounge had plenty of room and there was unlimited WiFi for passengers. Even the toilets were marbled and had places to remove your makeup, with complimentary makeup wipes and pads.
Turkish Airlines couldn’t have done any more for us. Their service was excellent and personally, I would fly with them in a heartbeat. From Business to Economy, the service and attention to detail was exceptional. If people are lucky enough to be able to fly business class, then I would highly recommend flying with Turkish Airlines… even if it’s just to experience the lounge in Istanbul! Before this trip, I would never have seen the value of business class but the airline has shown me that it’s the package deal that sells itself!
Turkish Airlines’ Academic Fares
Turkish Airlines offers a range of benefits that provide Academic clients with value for money and greater flexibility. When booking Turkish Airlines through Diversity Travel, you can benefit from:
- Special fares
- Reduced change and cancellation fees
- Available on ONE WAY, RETURN and OPEN JAW journey types
- UK departure points: LHR / LGW / MAN / BHX / EDI
To take advantage of the fares that Diversity Travel and Turkish Airlines have to offer, please contact us using the button below.