Rocks of ages: Cappadocia / Getty


Q. I am due to travel to Turkey in February, flying to Antalya for a trip including Cappadocia. I am now concerned about going. I have put a deposit down. If I cancel I am prepared to lose the deposit, but would I have to pay the whole cost of the trip? Angela Taylor, London

A. Southern Turkey in February looks alluring; while the eastern Mediterranean is  not immune to winter, you can expect mild temperatures in the coast around Antalya, and crisp, clear days in the weird and wonderful landscapes of Cappadocia. So it’s puzzling why you should be concerned about going. If it is related to the proximity of Islamic State fighters close to the south-eastern borders of Turkey, be assured that your destination is hundreds of miles away and the Turkish Army would not allow incursions into its territory.

You may also have been alarmed by the recent Foreign Office worldwide warning of a generalised threat to UK travellers. While there have long been official warnings about the risk of terrorism in Turkey, the Government is specifically concerned about terrorist attacks on British targets from jihadists returning from Iraq or Syria. There is no evidence that the threat against holidaymakers in Turkey is likely to increase.

Even so, you may still decide not to go, so it is important to understand the likely costs of cancelling. With a traditional package holiday, you pay a deposit, usually 10 per cent. So long as you cancel before further payment is due, there is no further obligation (except for some special “low-deposit” promotions). However, I am not aware of packages for that part of Turkey in February. Therefore I imagine the contract you have with the travel organiser may commit you to a higher obligation – in particular for the flights, which may already have been purchased on your behalf.