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Greece to Promote Tourism Product Through ‘Door to Door’ Strategy

Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis (R) with Tourism Minister Vassilis Kikilias and Deputy Tourism Minister Sofia Zacharaki.

Greek Tourism Minister Vassilis Kikilias has announced that he will follow a “door to door” strategy to promote Greece and this way connect with target markets on a personal level.

Speaking during a recent interview to Real News, Kikilias said that he soon plans to visit a number of countries in the near future and promote Greece “door to door” to pass on the message that the country is “the most beautiful part of the world”.

The Greek tourism minister’s first stop will be Romania, a country from where Greece could attract more road travelers from.

Next on the minister’s agenda will be visits to Serbia, Germany and the Scandinavian countries.

Kikilias underlined that the Greek government, having handled major external challenges of recent years, managed to create a “climate of trust and safety” for Greece for countries abroad.

“The brand name of the country was upgraded worldwide… This has resulted to a strong tourist flow, which creates significant prospects for boosting the Greek economy through tourism,” he said.

Target: Promoting lesser-known destinations

Photo: GTP

During the interview, Kikilias reminded that the ministry’s strategy includes casting the spotlight on lesser-known tourism destinations.

“This year, for the first time, the GNTO and the ministry have launched a campaign that will run all 12 months of the year,” he said.

The year-round campaign promotes mainland winter destinations; city breaks in Athens, Thessaloniki and other cities; and all the islands, especially the lesser known.

“This is our concept. To promote the lesser-known destinations, the incomparable beauties, unknown to many travelers, which are located in every corner of the country,” Kikilias said, highlighting that tourism is the strongest means of regional development and stimulation of the economy.

“On our small islands and in our mountainous areas, investments are flowing and the income from tourism is increasing sharply. In the same context, the tourism investments that are now being implemented throughout Greece will upgrade the quality of our brand and contribute to the emergence of new destinations,” he said.

Greek tourism in 2022

Commenting on Greece’s tourism performance so far, the minister referred to “very encouraging” data that includes high numbers of visitors from abroad during the recent Easter holiday.

“After two years (following the pandemic) our country welcomed travelers to winter destinations, city breaks on weekends – mainly in Athens and Thessaloniki – and now for the first 20 days of April the data is very positive for the Greek economy and for the income of the average Greek family,” Kikilias said.

The minister also appeared optimistic that the Greek tourism season can once again extend beyond autumn as was the case last year when many Greek islands such as Rhodes and Corfu had tourists coming during the winter months of 2021 and 2022.

Moreover, in early March, Greece saw the first cruise ships arrive for the season in Piraeus, Thessaloniki and Heraklion, earlier than ever. Also, during that month, US carriers began launching the first direct flights for 2022 from the United States. The minister said he expects more than 470,000 travelers to arrive in Athens this year from Washington, Chicago, Atlanta, Boston and New York.

Ο υπουργός Τουρισμού Βασίλης Κικίλιας (Δ) υποδέχεται επιβάτες από τις ΗΠΑ με πτήση της Delta, στις αφίξεις του αεροδρομίου "Ελ. Βενιζέλος", Τρίτη 8 Μαρτίου 2022. Έφτασε σήμερα η πρώτη, για φέτος, απευθείας πτήση της Delta, από Νέα Υόρκη για Αθήνα. ΑΠΕ-ΜΠΕ/ΑΠΕ-ΜΠΕ/Αλέξανδρος Μπελτές

“Our goal is to have tourists and visitors in Greece all year round,” he said.

Kikilias also referred τhe energy crisis, high prices and the general insecurity caused by the war that also affects Greece, as it does to every other country.

“We still live in a pandemic environment and unfortunately we are in the midst of a tragic war in the heart of Europe, which of course affects tourism worldwide. We will continue to work hard to achieve the best possible for the country,” he added.

€30 million for 2022 holiday subsidy program

At this point the minister announced that the ministry was planning to renew the holiday subsidy program ‘Tourism for All’ for this year.

Addressed to low-income Greeks, the “Tourism for All” social tourism program offers subsidized holidays throughout the year. The program also aims to boost domestic tourism for the benefit of businesses in the industry.

According to Kikilias, the program for 2022 will launch in July and 30 million euros will be allocated from the state budget to give the opportunity to Greeks to enjoy vacations in the country. More details are expected to be released soon.

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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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