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South Aegean Islands Welcome 5.4 Million Arrivals So Far in 2022

Mykonos from above. Photo source: South Aegean Tourism Initiative

Greece’s South Aegean Region, which includes popular destinations such as RhodesKosSantorini, and Mykonos, has welcomed 5.4 million international arrivals so far this year, the South Aegean Tourism Initiative (SATI) said on Monday.

According to data, in the January-September 2022 period, five of the South Aegean Region’s main airports handled 4.8 million visitors arriving on 31,000 international flights. Adding international arrivals to the region’s islands via Athens International Airport, SATI says the total comes to 5.4 million.

September air arrivals through to the region’s four main airports exceeded pre-Covid 2019 levels by 14 percent. More specifically, for the month, 850,000 travelers arrived on 6,000 international flights with Rhodes accounting for half (410,000). Kos followed with 205,000 arrivals, Santorini with 130,000 and Mykonos with 86,500.

Key source markets

The UK, Germany, Italy and France were the key source markets to the islands of the South Aegean in 2022 with the British and Germans choosing mostly Rhodes and Kos for their holidays. Santorini and Mykonos, meanwhile, attracted more Brits and Italians. Travelers from the Netherlands, Poland, Belgium and Italy chose to vacation on Kos.

Overall, through the region’s leading airport on Rhodes in the year to September 2022, arrivals from the UK accounted for 23 percent, from Germany 20 percent, from Poland 7 percent, from France, Israel and Sweden 5 percent and from Italy 4 percent of all international arrivals.

Governor: Planning, cooperation are essential

“This tourist season destroyed many myths, but also highlighted the value of planning and cooperation… October continues the dynamic,” said South Aegean Governor George Hatzimarkos on social media.

The South Aegean Tourism Initiative is made up of local tourism, trade and hospitality professionals and their relevant associations and chambers.

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