TOURISM
Tourism set for record takings

Greek tourism is heading for a new record for travel receipts this year despite the decline in the growth rate of bookings from Germany for holidays in Greece in the third quarter. Last year, travel receipts reached 17.7 billion euros, while the record belongs to 2019, with €18.2 billion. The challenge for this year is to exceed €18.5 billion.

According to the data available to Kathimerini from Greek tourism operators, both the first and second quarters of 2023 appear significantly strengthened compared to 2022.

That is confirmed by Aegean Airlines passenger traffic data in January-May: Foreign passenger traffic for Aegean to and from Athens International Airport grew 65% compared to 2022 and 12% from 2019 while at Thessaloniki’s Makedonia Airport it increased by 72% from last year and 30% compared to 2019.

The forecast for higher revenues is also supported by Bank of Greece data for January-March 2023, when travel receipts showed an increase of 63.8% from Q1 of 2022, amounting to €732.9 million. Usually only 5% of annual travel receipts are recorded in the first quarter of each year and 25% in Q2. The third quarter is the peak of the year and accounts for 60% of travel receipts, while another 10% comprises Q4 receipts.

Given that 30% of this year’s first half is estimated to exceed the receipts of January-June 2019 and that Q3 will be similar to last year, it can be surmised that this year will register a new record of receipts.

Still, based on data from the Institute of the Greek Tourism Confederation, bookings from Germany for Q3 appear stagnant or even marginally down from last year. This is attributed to the channeling of a large of promotional activity by large German tour operators to Turkey, at the expense mainly of Spain and secondarily Greece.

The more attractive prices in Turkey also represent a competitive advantage. At the same time, reservations are being expressed about the American market, given the decline compared to 2022 in the dollar’s exchange rate, which removes the relative benefit for travelers from the US to eurozone states like Greece.

Source: Ekathimerini.com

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