Hamburg Airport and Turkish Airlines held a special celebration on September 20 to mark 50 years since the flag carrier began flying to the German hub.

What began as a one-off flight to Istanbul in 1972, has developed into a “successful partnership” with the airline now positioned as the largest provider of flights to Turkey from Hamburg Airport.

As part of the festivities, Michael Eggenschwiler, CEO of Hamburg Airport, Nurullah Oguz, director of Turkish Airlines in Hamburg, Judith Reuter, head of the aviation department in the Hamburg Ministry of Economic Affairs and Innovation, and Emine Derya Kara, Consul General of the Republic of Turkey in Hamburg, formally welcomed an Airbus A330 flying the jubilee route, Istanbul – Hamburg.

“A business partnership that lasts for 50 years is not to be taken for granted. The Hamburg – Istanbul route launched a genuine success story. Demand is strong all year round for the flights offered by Turkish Airlines, and Hamburg’s route network is inconceivable without them,” said Michael Eggenschwiler, CEO of Hamburg Airport. “Turkish Airlines was one of the first carriers to resume operations during the pandemic crisis, successively increasing frequencies. This courage paid off. Measured by passenger numbers, Turkish Airlines developed into the fifth largest airline in Hamburg last year. At the same time, this commitment demonstrates once again the importance of Hamburg.

“And we know that we have a forward-looking partner by our side in the form of Turkish Airlines, a partner that depends on modern, efficient aircraft such as the Airbus A321neo, Airbus A350 and Boeing 737 MAX. As the first CO2-neutral commercial airport in Germany, we are very happy to see this.”

Nurullah Oguz, director of Turkish Airlines in Hamburg, added: “We at Turkish Airlines are delighted to have been at Hamburg Airport with our Istanbul services for 50 years now, and we are proud to have offered people in Hamburg and the entire region pleasant and comfortable flights from the city to Turkey for several decades, especially with the [inbound] flights to destinations around the world via our Istanbul hub.”

The airline has two year-round destinations in its timetable: Istanbul and Istanbul/Sabiha Gökçen. In the summer, there are also flights to Ankara and Antalya, one of the most popular holiday destinations for north Germans.