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More than 14 Million Foreign Tourists in Greece in January-November 2021

The number of inbound travellers to Greece almost doubled during the first 11 months of 2021 compared to 2020, according to data released by the Bank of Greece on Friday.

More specifically, international arrivals to the country rose by 96.8 percent and exceeded over 14.3 million compared with 7.3 million during the same period in 2020. During the January-November period, traveller flows through airports increased by 106.7 percent, as did arrivals through road border-crossing points, by 66.5 percent.

Photo source: South Aegean Tourism Initiative

Travel receipts in Greece during the same period increased by some 6.1 billion euros or 144.6 percent year-on-year to 10.4 billion euros (Greece’s tourism revenue was around 4.3 billion euros during January-November 2020). The rise in travel receipts was due to the 96.8 percent increase in inbound traveller flows, as well as to a rise of 22.6 percent in average expenditure per trip.

Greece’s travel receipts for the first 11 months of 2021 add up to 58.5 percent of the revenues of 2019 (17.8 billion euros) for the corresponding period.

Who came to Greece and increased spending

According to the Bank of Greece’s data, during January-November 2021 the number of travellers to Greece from within the euro area rose by 111.9 percent with the Germans (up by 95.2 percent to 2.9 million) and the French (up by 148.6 percent to 1.2 million) in the lead. Receipts from Germany increased by 108.5 percent year-on-year to 2.4 billion euros and receipts from France were up by 170.7 percent to 991 million euros.

Turning to non-EU27 countries, travelers to Greece increased by 91.5 percent with the number of visitors from the United Kingdom up by 45.9 percent (to 1.5 million) and receipts up by 95.6 percent to 1.5 billion euros. Travelers from the United States to Greece rose by 266 percent (to 382,000) and their spending was up by 603.4 percent to 598 million euros. Visitors from Russia were also up by 350.1 percent (to 112,000) and their spending rose by 674.8 percent to 108 million euros.

November 2021

The data for November reveals that Greece managed to extend its tourism season way into the winter season as the number of inbound travellers that month rose by 219.3 percent year-on-year to 561,000. Specifically, traveller flows through airports increased by 249.6 percent compared with November 2020 and traveller flows through road border-crossing points rose by 197.9 percent.

Travel receipts rose by 308.2 percent to 287 million euros in November 2021 from 70 million euros in the same month in 2020. The rise in travel receipts resulted from the 219.3 percent increase in inbound traveller flows and a 25.6 percent rise in average expenditure per trip.

Photo source: @Thessaloniki Travel

Moreover, the data for November shows that the number of travellers from Germany increased by 258.2 percent to 75,000 and travellers from France increased by 375.1 percent to 18,000. Travelers from these two countries spent 30 million euros (up by 208.9 percent) and 7 million euros (up by 293.5 percent) respectively.

Turning to non-EU27 countries, in November the number of travellers from the United Kingdom to Greece rose by 88.6 percent to 64,000, while the number of travellers from the United States increased by 268.5 percent to 17,000 and from Russia by 4,281.0 percent to 17,000. Travel receipts from the UK rose by 163 percent to 36 million euros, from the US were up by 363.1 percent to 22 million euros and from Russia rose by 1,642.2 percent to 10 million euros.

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About the Author
Nikos is Greek-American born in New York, USA, and has lived in Greece for over 30 years. He is the managing editor of Greece's leading monthly travel and tourism guide, the Greek Travel Pages (GTP) since June 2008 and of news site GTP Headlines since its launch in September 2012. Nikos has also served as international press officer for the City of Athens and for the mayor. He has a degree in Mass Media and Communications, specializing in Journalism. Nikos is a native English speaker and speaks Greek fluently.

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