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ITEP Predicts Greek Tourism Will Worsen in 2009

A study conducted by the Research Institute for Tourism and Forecasts on the performance of the Greek tourism sector for the first nine months of 2008 concluded that global tourism has been affected by the international economic crisis and despite the strength it has shown in past adverse events it appears that it will not get “off the hook” this time.

According to the institute, Greece and its “rival” tourism countries, except Turkey and Croatia, have been affected by this international crisis.

The institute notes that foreign arrivals at major airports of Greece during the nine-month period of January-September 2008 recorded a decline of 1.2 percent against the same period in 2007.

In regards to the fall of tourist arrivals in Greece, the institute clarifies that air arrivals to all Greek airports -that constitute 80 percent of total arrivals- showed a reduction during January-September 2008 when compared with the year before.

However, the institute excluded the airports of Thessaloniki, Mykonos, Kefallonia and Chios, which saw an increase in arrivals.

The institute stressed that the estimate for all of 2008 is likely to be worse since the September airport arrivals, except those of Chios and Samos, decreased significantly.

It also expressed its concern in regards to September’s tourism progress of popular destinations such as Crete, the Dodecanese and the Ionian Island group, as they did not produce the expected results.

The arrivals in Crete fell 2.8 percent against a drop of 1.4 percent in 2007. That compares with an increase of 11.5 percent and 6.7 percent in 2005 and 2004 respectively.

Arrivals to the Dodecanese fell 7.3 percent against the 2.6 percent and 4.8 percent growth in 2006 and 2005 respectively, while the Ionian Island region saw a reduced figure of 5.1 percent against a 0.2 percent decrease in 2006.

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About the Author
Nikos is Greek-American born in New York, USA, and has lived in Greece for over 30 years. He is the managing editor of Greece's leading monthly travel and tourism guide, the Greek Travel Pages (GTP) since June 2008 and of news site GTP Headlines since its launch in September 2012. Nikos has also served as international press officer for the City of Athens and for the mayor. He has a degree in Mass Media and Communications, specializing in Journalism. Nikos is a native English speaker and speaks Greek fluently.

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