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Quality, Year-round Tourism the Answer to Overtourism

Photo Source: @Celestyal Cruises

Photo Source: @Celestyal Cruises

Quality and year-round tourism could be the answer to the phenomenon of overourism, Celelestyal Cruises CEO Kerry Anastasiadis told reporters during a press conference in early December.

Celestyal Cruises CEO Kerry Anastasiadis.

Celestyal Cruises CEO Kerry Anastasiadis.

Citing data of the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC), Anastasiadis said the number of tourists worldwide is expected to reach 1.8 billion by 2030.

Meanwhile, “the contribution of tourism to the global economy has significantly surpassed all other sectors. As the number of tourists is expected to increase by 500 million worldwide in the next 15 years it is only natural that all destinations will see a rise in demand,” Anastasiadis underlined.

According to a report released by WTTC and McKinsey & Company, Greece is also among the countries expected to see the number of international tourist arrivals rise by 3 million until 2020. “The challenge is for Greece to come up with ways to manage the rise of tourism,” Anastasiadis said and set the question: “Should Greece insist on increasing the number of tourists or should it focus on the quality of its visitors?

The Acropolis, Athens. © GTP

The Acropolis, Athens. © GTP

Being in favor of quality, Celestyal Cruises has announced plans to focus on the Greek and the Turkish markets in 2018. The company’s goal is to organize year-round cruises in Greece by 2020.

This coincides with the Greek Tourism Ministry’s policy to develop tourism 365 days a year. “Prolonging our season is very important to us so we can satisfy all our visitors through a longer tourism period, not only for the summer season but also throughout the year,” Tourism Minister Elena Kountoura said during the 11th edition of the UNWTO/WTM Ministers’ Summit held in November in London.

Cruise travel is not responsible for overtourism

Celestyal Cruises CEO Kerry Anastasiadis also referred to the effect of cruise travel on overtourism. “There are currently 1.3 billion people goining on vacation every year worldwide. The number of cruise travelers is just 25 million. The cruise sector could not be responsible for the (negative) effects of overtourism,” he said.

Cruise travel is steadily on the rise according to the annual report of the Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA). CLIA’s 2018 State of the Cruise Industry Outlook found that approximately 27.2 million passengers are expected to set sail in 2018.

About the Author
Eleftheria has worked for several financial newspapers, magazines and websites during the past 19 years. Between 2004 and 2014 she worked as a radio producer, reporter and presenter for the Greek and English language program of “Athina 9.84 FM”. She also has hands-on experience in the MICE industry.

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