Greece posted above-average, double-digit growth in 2021 winning over international travelers seeking to get some sea and sun, according to the latest World Travel Monitor findings presented by IPK International at ITB Berlin earlier this month.
At the same time, the country managed to increase both the average duration of stay and amount of money spent compared to 2020. Besides Greece, top performers in 2021 were Spain and Italy.
According to the IPK survey, despite Covid-19 lockdowns and tight travel restrictions in 2021, outbound travel increased worldwide with stronger growth posted in the second half of the year leading to an upturn in international tourism.
Looking ahead, survey results reflect keen demand for holidays and travel in the coming months despite the pandemic and the Russia-Ukraine crisis. More specifically, the findings point to strong growth and a clear recovery with 80 percent expressing interest in outbound travel despite Omicron.
In Europe, outbound travel intentions are stable, at almost 90 percent of pre-pandemic levels, the survey found.
Globally, source markets with a high probability for outbound travel are Germany, the UK, the US, France and the Netherlands, which are also key source markets for Greece.
Preferred destinations in 2021 are Italy, Spain and Germany, followed by France and the US. Overseas travel to Europe is in demand especially among Americans and Asians.
Sun & beach holidays are still popular but there is also a keen interest in city breaks
Key takeaways for 2021:
-holiday travel increased by 4 percent
-private travel saw an above-average increase up by 9 percent
-business travel declined by 14 percent
– top growth driver was sun & beach holidays, up by 30 percent.
– demand is growing for more information and digitalization, IPK analysts said. Close to 75 percent of travelers now want digital services such as being able to book hotels, flights, events as well as visits to virtual attractions. The same applies to online presence and online ‘bookability’ of destinations
-globally, outbound travel could reach 50 to 60 percent of pre-pandemic levels in 2022 and by 2024, outbound travel volumes can be expected to be level with 2019.