Developing all-year-round tourism in Greece and providing incentives to the country’s hotels to upgrade their services and infrastructure, are included among the priorities of the Tourism Ministry, according to Greek Minister Haris Theoharis.
During a recent interview on state-owned broadcaster ERT1, Minister Theoharis referred to the ministry’s aim to extend Greek tourism to all four seasons of the year through a long-term strategy; to promote new destinations that are currently “unknown” to travelers; and to attract high-end tourists to the country.
He also spoke of the government’s recently announced decade-long strategy for tourism that includes the goal to make Greece a “green” destination.
“This shouldn’t be a short-term effort, but this should be the stigma of Greek tourism,” he said.
To this end, Theoharis announced that incentives will be introduced for the energy upgrade of tourist units, following the Cyprus model, and also for infrastructure improvements, such as increasing common areas (dining rooms, for example).
Moreover, the minister said that in collaboration with the Labor Ministry and the Greek Manpower Employment Organization (OAED), employees in tourism will be given the opportunity to receive certification through seminars so that they can then claim higher wages, while the companies that employ them will be motivated to remain open longer.
In addition, in an interview on One Channel, the minister referred to short-term rentals, which he sees as part of the Greek “tourist product” and part of the visitor’s experience.
However, he said that the short-term rental market can not be a “haven for tax evasion”.
According to reports, the government will introduce a new framework for Airbnb-type rentals at the end of this year’s tourism season.