The Greek Tourism Ministry is taking initiatives in collaboration with the Citizens Protection Ministry to improve safety in large Greek cities and mainly in Athens as part of its plan to boost city break travel, Tourism Minister Vassilis Kikilias said recently.
In an interview to SKAI radio, Kikilias welcomed new hotel investments in degraded areas which he said, brighten the city center and also contribute significantly to growth.
“Security in Athens brings investment and is our priority,” said Kikilias.
“I support the investments made around Omonia [Square], in a degraded area of Athens. This means new hotel businesses that will create economic activity, attract travelers and foreign exchange, increase employment and brighten the city center inhibiting crime,” he said.
In this direction, Public Order and & Civil Protection Minister Takis Theodorikakos pledged to reinforce security at major tourism points by increasing by 50 percent Greek policing efforts at main airports, border stations, and main tourist destinations.
Kikilias has requested that security be heightened at points of increased tourist activity, including airports and ports in Attica and on popular islands.
In a previous interview, Kikilias underlined the importance of safety and how it affects traveler decisions. Greece is a popular choice among holidaymakers because it managed to gain traveler confidence and instill a sense of safety during Covid-19 and this is reflected in the increase in pre-bookings for 2022.
Kikilias went on to underline the importance of “cleaning up” the city and making it safer so that city break vacationers can visit year round. Hotel investments in the city center are paving the way, he said.
“We cannot help the industry that supports Greek society, if we have not first of all solved a key issue that has plagued the capital for decades: the issue of petty crime,” he said.
The minister went on to add that the government had made great efforts to address criminality and that more needed to be done.