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France, US Markets Driving Greek Tourism in October 2018

Driving tourism growth to Greece in October 2018 were visitors from France, with spending up by 73.0 percent to 90 million euros, and by US visitors with spending up by 84.8 percent to 163 million euros, according to data released by the Bank of Greece.

Meanwhile, spending from major source market Germany declined by 6.2 percent to 326 million euros in October as did receipts from Russian travelers (of non-EU markets) down by 25.0 percent to 17 million euros in the same month.

For the month of October 2018, incoming travel traffic came to 2,723,000 travelers, up by 15.6 percent compared to the same month in 2017 with traffic through airports up by 12.0 percent, while road traffic increased by 40.0 percent.

More specifically, travelers from EU countries increased by 12.4 percent while those from outside the EU were down by 24.8 percent. In October, the number of visitors from within the euro area rose by 13.4 percent to 1,227,000 and by 10.9 percent to 753,000 from outside the EU.

The number of visitors from France increased by 50.6 percent to 157,000, but travelers decreased by 7.8 percent to 612,000 from Germany and by 13.1 percent to 253,000 from the UK.

In terms of non-EU countries, the number of visitors from Russia rose by 8.9  percent to 45,000, and by 77.7 percent to 164,000 from the US.

Over the January-October 2018 period, inbound travel traffic grew by 10.8 percent to 28,680 thousand travelers against 25,891 thousand in the corresponding 2017 period with flows through airports up by 13.4 percent and road traffic stronger by 6.7 percent.

Tourism receipts for October 2018 increased by 18.3 percent to 1,408 million euros, against 1,191 million euros in the same month in 2017 driven by  surge in incoming tourism flows, while travel payments dropped by 1.3 percent, the Bank of Greece said this week.

The central bank said the improved figures were driven by a 15.6 percent rise in the number of visitors to Greece and to increased average spending per trip by 16 euros or 3.4 percent.

More specifically for October 2018, revenue generated by EU-based travelers rose by 14.1 percent to 901 million euros, and while receipts from non-EU nationals grew by 31.7 percent to 447 million euros against 339 million euros in October 2017.

In January-October 2018 period, travel receipts increased by 9.9 percent compared to the corresponding period in 2017 to 15,614 million euros driven by a 12.4 percent rise in receipts from EU residents and a 5.1 percent increase in those from non-EU visitors.

Net receipts from travel services contributed 69.7 percent to the total of net receipts from services and offset the balance of goods balance by 51.9 percent, the BoG said.

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