While Greece still recorded record sales in tourism in the previous year, the Corona year 2020 was more of a disaster. 78 percent fewer passengers landed and the sales generated from the important mainstay of tourism will be only 20 percent of the previous year's figure by the end of the year. This was declared by Minister of Tourism Harry Theoharis.
The politician also stated that extremely important markets of origin such as Israel, the Russian Federation, the USA, Canada, Australia and Turkey have almost completely collapsed. Even within the European Union, significantly fewer people decided to go on holiday in Greece and various restrictions, for example from Italy, would have put a significant damper on demand.
The numbers mentioned by Theoharis are also noticeable at Athens Airport. This posted an 80 percent decline immediately after the lockdown. In July and August the minus was around 70 percent and in September 2020 it was minus 70 percent. The regional and island airports hardly performed better, because together they only counted 3,3 million arriving passengers in the summer season. In direct comparison with the same period of the previous year, this corresponds to a decrease of 70 percent.
“Greek tourism has achieved three very important goals this year: First, the tourism market gave Greece a vote of confidence. Second, the country's brand name and reputation that emerged during the first wave of the pandemic was not only maintained but also strengthened during the tourist season. And thirdly, the implementation of health protocols was exemplary, ”said Harry Theoharis, who is nevertheless pleased that the sector has so far come through with a“ black eye ”.