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Greece's latest tourism industry news by Greek Travel Pages (gtp)

August Tourism to Greece Going Strong Despite Virus, Fires

Tourism flows to Greece in August are gaining momentum despite Covid-19 and the devastating fires this month, driven by a strong demand from European travelers.

According to tourism stakeholders and data released by Eurocontrol, global travel data provider OAG, the National Bank of Greece, Fraport Group, and hoteliers’ associations, occupancy levels are expected at around 80 percent in August, and almost 90 percent at favorite destinations such as Crete, Santorini and Mykonos.

In view of the data, Greek Tourism Confederation (SETE) President Yiannis Retsos expressed confidence that a “positive scenario” for Greece’s tourism sector was underway.

“The course of tourism from June until today is evolving according to the most positive scenario. Our main concern now must be the continuation of September-October operations for seasonal destinations, but also afterwards, for city and winter destinations. This can only be done by observing measures and increasing vaccinations,” said Retsos.

“This how a steady recovery will pan out and the positive effect of tourism will reflect on society and the economy,” he added.

SETE President Yiannis Retsos

Indicatively, tourism receipts in July covered nearly 70 percent of pre-pandemic 2019 levels, while Eurocontrol placed Greece in the 7th spot in terms of flight traffic on August 11.

Germany is the leading market driving tourist traffic to Greece, followed by the UK, Italy, France and The Netherlands with the highest demand for Athens, Heraklion and Chania (Crete), Rhodes, Corfu, Santorini, Kos, Thessaloniki, Mykonos, and Zakynthos airports.

Tourism stakeholders expect to achieve around 60 percent of pre-crisis 2019 revenues in the best case scenario and if no new restrictions are announced.

Earlier this month, Eurocontrol said Greece was in the top 10 countries recording the highest increases in flight traffic compared to 2019 and that air traffic was fast approaching 2019 pre-Covid-19 levels. The association revised its previous four-year forecast based on which air traffic would reach 2019 levels by 2024 the earliest.

According to Greece’s central bank, travel receipts in 2020 dropped by 76.2 percent to 4.3 billion euros with the number of arrivals down by 78.2 percent bringing the total number of tourists to Greece last year to just 7.4 million against 34 million in 2019 who generated 18.2 billion euros.

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  1. Peter Mourmouras Reply

    As a Greek American, NOT making vaccines mandatory and KEEPING the TESTING requirements in place is the key for US citizens to travel to Greece. If Greece makes vaccines mandatory, Greece will lose MANY US travelers!! US travelers spend 30% more in Greece than any other country. Greece hopefully will not follow the leftist/Socialist political agenda happening in the USA!

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