Tourism to Greece with record gains

In 2012, Greek tourism took a big hit in the aftermath of images of protests, strikes and riots against austerity measures.

Tourism to Greece with record gains

In 2012, Greek tourism took a big hit in the aftermath of images of protests, strikes and riots against austerity measures. This year, with Greeks largely surrendering, it’s been relatively calm and visitors are returning in record numbers, with some 17.5 million expected before it’s over.

What a difference a year makes.

That’s giving a boost to the beleaguered economy and image of the country which ranks in the top 20 most-visited in the world. Reports show August is booming as well and that visitors aren’t being daunted by rising prices for hotels.

Data from the Association of Greek Tourism Enterprises (SETE) showed the arrivals of foreign tourists at the main airports of the country increased by 8.6 percent in July 2013 as well, after their increase by 12.6 percent on an annual basis during the second trimester of 2013 and compared to their slight drop of 6.2 percent in the first trimester of 2013.

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In addition, on annual basis, important was the rise in the number of arrivals by 9.3 percent, or 585,000 passengers) during the first seven months of 2013, in comparison with their drop by 2.4 percent in the first seven months of 2012. The number of air arrivals during the first seven months of 2013 was bigger by 6.6 percent than the correspondent number of travelers in the first seven months of 2011.

More good news was the large increase in arrivals at Athens International Airport during the three-month period May-July 2013. The same airport suffered a drop in arrivals in 2012 and in the four first months of the year 2013. In particular the arrivals at the airport of Athens were increased by 11.21 percent in May, by 10.53 percent in June and by 1.51 percent in July 2013.

Regarding the hotel prices, according to the catalogue of www.trivago.gr, the average paid per night in August of 2013 stood at 131 euros compared to 119 euros in August of 2012 and 121 euros in August 2011. This news change the trend of the forming of lower prices in hotel prices in Greece during the last months and enhances the expectations for an important rise in revenues from the foreign tourism of 2013, said Alplha Bank analysts.

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