Tourists in Greece spent over 16 billion euros during the first nine months of the year, according to the Bank of Greece.
The data, which was released on Thursday, showed that although Greece’s travel receipts from German travelers declined, the tourism revenue left behind by British and French tourists, as well as by holidaymakers from non-EU countries, was on the up.
In January-September 2019, travel receipts in Greece totalled 16.08 billion euros, up by 14 percent compared to the same period of 2018. This development was driven by a 13.6 percent increase in receipts from residents of the EU28, which came to over 11.17 billion euros, and by a 15.8 percent rise in receipts from residents outside the EU28 to over 4.5 billion euros.
According to the data, British tourists were those who spent the most money in Greece during the January-September 2019 period. Receipts from the United Kingdom rose by 39.2 percent to some 2.4 billion. It should be noted that both arrivals and travel receipts of UK travelers rose in Greece during the January-September 2019 period and in September alone despite fears of Brexit and the Thomas Cook collapse.
Moreover, travel receipts in Greece from France increased by 19 percent to over 1 billion euros.
On the downside, Germany’s travel receipts in Greece fell by 5.6 percent to some 2.4 billion euros during the first nine months of the year.
Turning to non-EU28 countries, receipts in Greece from the United States increased by 16.6 percent to 960 million euros and receipts from Russia also increased by 19.9 percent to 368 million euros.
In January-September 2019, the number of inbound visitors to Greece rose by 3.8 percent to some 26,953 thousand, compared with 25,957 in 2018. During that period, visitors from the UK were in the lead and up by 20.3 percent to over 3,141 thousand. Greece also saw rising visitor numbers from France, up by 4.3 percent to some 1,384 thousand. On the other hand, the number of visitors from Germany decreased by 9.2 percent to some 3,312 thousand.
Turning to non-EU28 countries, the number of visitors from the US increased by 15.5 percent to 983 thousand, while visitors from Russia rose by 4.6 percent to 469 thousand.
In September alone, according to the data, travel receipts increased by 16 percent year-on-year to over 2.8 million euros, from some 2.4 billion euros in September 2018. The number of inbound visitors during that month stood at 5,111 thousand, compared with 4,869 thousand in September 2018.
In September, visitors by air declined by 1.5 percent, whereas visitor flows through road border-crossing points increased by 19.6 percent. This increase in flows was due to higher visitor flows from both within the EU28 (up 5.5 percent) and outside the EU28 (up 3.5 percent).