Cruise tourism to Greece posted a 13 percent rise, with luxury liners arriving at Greek ports beyond the regular tourist season, Shipping Minister Miltiadis Varvitsiotis told a meeting on Monday.
Jointly organized by the shipping and tourism ministries, the meeting held on Piraeus Port Authority (OLP) grounds, focused on cruise tourism and invited all sector professionals and authorities to contribute to a dialogue on the best and most effective ways to tap into its potential.
“The country has a great deal to gain from cruise travel. For this reason we have decided to set up a national coordinating committee to monitor cruise tourism and step in to solve problems as they may arise,” Mr. Varvitsiotis said.
Tourism Minister Olga Kefalogianni said cruise tourism, particularly home porting, can play a leading role in the development of the sector. The minister added that home porting can boost Greek coffers ten-fold compared transit calls of port.
Mrs. Kefalogianni stressed that cruise tourism to Greece has been a main contributor to the country’s rising tourism figures. In 2014, 20 million visitors came to Greece. An additional two million were luxury liner passengers.