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Athens Showed Its Best At WTM 2012

“Strategic alliances and the joining of forces significantly enhance the effort to reposition Athens on the international tourism map,” the president of the Athens-Attica Hotel Association, Alexandros Vasilikos, said recently after his return from the World Travel Market (WTM) held 5-8 November in London, UK.

For the fourth consecutive year, the association and the Athens Development and Destination Management Agency joined forces and participated in this year’s WTM through a joint stand and showcased a united image of the Greek capital’s tourism product and hotel infrastructure.

Even though, during the days of the WTM (5-8 November), Athens was frequently in the UK and international media due to Greece’s political developments and social unrest, the interest to the destination was significant and a particular interest was shown on cultural tourism and the city’s new infrastructure. Of course, questions in regards to the developments and the situation in Athens dominated every meeting.

Even though, during the days of the WTM (5-8 November), Athens was frequently in the UK and international media due to Greece’s political developments and social unrest, the interest to the destination was significant and a particular interest was shown on cultural tourism and the city’s new infrastructure. Of course, questions in regards to the developments and the situation in Athens dominated every discussion.

“The exceptional accommodation potential of our city can meet any requirement of every visitor of each category and its coordinated and targeted promotion together with the full range of the destination’s services, contribute to the achievement of our common goals,” Mr. Vasilikos said.

Tourism professionals and visitors to the Athens stand were informed in regards to the infrastructure and capabilities of Athens as a destination for leisure, city break, conference and corporate meetings and on the wide range of tourism services and activities the Greek capital offers its visitors.

“The effort to promote Athens and reverse the negative climate in the international tourism market requires cooperation and targeted actions by all stakeholders,” the president of the Athens Development and Destination Management Agency, Giorgos Broulias, said.

He underlined that the agency and the city’s hotel association successfully continue their cooperation by promoting a single and comprehensive picture of destination Athens to markets of interest.

Presentations were held at the Greek capital’s stand to tourism professionals and visitors under the central message that Athens is a safe destination, ideal for all forms and categories of tourism, throughout the year.

According to Greek and British tourism professionals and based on initial forecasts of UK tour operators, British holiday bookings to Greece are currently moving on a positive level, especially for specific island destinations.

Arkenford study
According to a study conducted by research company Arkenford on behalf of the Greek National Tourism Organization and presented at WTM 2012 during the Greek delegation’s press conference to the UK media, the majority of British consumers prefer to reside at 4- and 5-star hotels and tourist villas.

The two main British customer groups to Greece are: families that travel during the high season and younger couples and retired couples that travel during the low season. Repeat visitors to Greece tend to make their reservations early while there is a considerable quantity of visitors that are price-sensitive and wait for “last minute offers” to the country.

The study also showed that among Britons who visited Greece over the past five years, 37 percent said they would seriously consider returning and some 34 percent said that it was rather likely to travel again to a Greek destination.


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