Despite the recent political changes in the country, incoming tourism to Greece seems to have taken off with an increased number of arrivals from abroad.
The travel surplus increased by 50 percent due to a significant rise in non-residents’ arrivals in January, even though the corresponding receipts rose by just 9 percent.
According to provisional data from the Bank of Greece, incoming traffic in January came to 606,000 passengers, up 49.9 percent year-on-year, leading to a 9.1 percent rise in travel receipts at 14 million euros, with the average spending per trip dropping by 27 percent.
More specifically, the number of arrivals from EU countries increased by 26.6 percent with 132,000 passengers, while arrivals from non-EU countries rose by 173.3 percent with 239,000 travelers, compared to 87,000 in January 2014. In the same month, arrivals from France, Germany and the UK increased by 66.4 percent, 29.7 percent and 50.8 percent, respectively.
In the meantime, the number of arrivals from Russia dropped by 69.3 percent, down to 3,000 travelers, in contrast to the number of travelers from the US, which rose by 55.7 percent to 15,000.
Travel receipts in January 2015 came to 170 million euros compared to 156 million euros in the same month last year. Receipts from EU residents rose by 25.8 percent to 91 million euros compared to 72 million euros last year, while receipts from residents of non-EU countries dropped by 4 million euros (5.3 percent) amounting to 77 million euros compared to 81 million euros in January 2014.
Receipts generated from German travelers remained stable at 16 million euros, while receipts from the French increased by about 1 million euros reaching 5 million euros. Revenue from UK holidaymakers over the same period strengthened by 57 percent reaching 15 million euros compared to 10 million euros last year.
At the same time, receipts from Russia dropped by 61.2 percent to 3 million euros and from the US by 29.2 percent to 7 million euros.