Tourism’s contribution to the Greek economy will be even greater in 2023 than it was in 2022, Tourism Minister Vasilis Kikilias predicted in an interview with the Athens-Macedonian News Agency released on Sunday. The minister pointed out that pre-bookings were at very high levels and passenger traffic at the Athens international airport was higher than in 2022, as well as in the pre-pandemic period.
Greece ranks high in the preferences of European travellers, as shown by the figures released by big tour operators, while the ITB tourism exhibition in Berlin showed a 10 pct increase in bookings to Greece relative to 2022, Kikilias said.
The minister noted, however, that tourism can’t run on “autopilot” and he referred to the action taken by the tourism ministry to open up new markets and strike agreements with powerful actors. At the same time, there were targeted promotional campaigns to advertise the Greek tourism product throughout the year, he said, predicting that “we will have an excellent season this year.”
The 2023 tourism season began earlier than ever for the islands of the south Aegean, Kikilias pointed out, with the first direct flight to Rhodes arriving on March 11, on the same day as the new season of direct flights from the United States to Athens began and just two days after the Delta flights of the previous season had ended.
“Consequently, not only did we effectively extend the tourism season but we have succeeded in Greece evolving into a year-round travel destination,” he said.