Tourism Bookings Look Good for Greece

forum_greece_imgAfter a rough 2012 when tourists, scared off by political and social unrest and images of protests, strike and riots stayed away in droves, 2013 is shaping up to be a rebound year with more than a million more visitors than last year expected.

The good news came from the head of the Association of Hellenic Tourism Enterprises, Andreas Andreadis, who spoke to the Bank of Greece shareholders’ meeting on Feb. 25.

Andreadis said figures show that the British market is reporting a rise of 20 percent, and the markets of Germany, France and the Scandinavian countries displaying growth of 15 percent.

Developing tourism markets such as Russia, Ukraine, Israel and Turkey are also showing a rise in demand, leading to an increase of more than 20 percent in the number of seats available, he said, according to the newspaper Kathimerini.

Andreadis cautioned though that there are concerns about the markets of Italy, Spain and Bulgaria, as their financial troubles may cut back on visitors traveling from those countries. He said there has been increased interest in maritime and cruise tourism, though incoming conference tourism remains somewhat lackluster because Athens and Thessaloniki are not seen as favorable destinations.

Domestic tourism isn’t looking good though as Greeks buried under austerity measures are cutting back or giving up on visiting their own land. Last year Greeks spent only 1.5 billion euros ($1.98 billion) in Greece, half of the levels of the pre-economic crisis year of 2008. He said a further decline, although smaller, is expected this year.

Andreadis added that the targets of 17 million foreign tourists and 11 billion euros ($14.4 billion) in revenues from tourism are likely to be attained or even exceeded. Should a few crucial measures be taken, he noted, Greek tourism could in the next two to three years reach up to 20 million visitors, adding some 3 percent to the country’s faltering Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and tens of thousands of new jobs.

The Greek news agency AMNA reported that he also said tourism is  strong supporter of the Greek economy after achieving its targets of attracting 16 million international arrivals and 10 billion euros in tourism receipts last year, although that was less than the previous year and achieved despite the crisis.

Andreadis said that annual investments worth 2.5 billion euros ($3.27 billion) were needed to raise tourism’s contribution to 40 percent of the country’s future economic growth. He said it could be attained stressed that the first 11 significant new investment plans were currently under licensing procedures by Greek authorities.

Promotion of an ambitious privatization program and the sale or lease of idle tourist real estate assets by banks were also expected to help towards achieving this year, he noted, although the country’s international lenders say the expectations are far below projections.

He said it was critical  to speed up procedures for visa issuing, reducing the 23 percent Value Added Tax (VAT) on the restaurant industry to 13 pct and of the VAT on coastal shipping to 13 pct, with the goal of reducing a VAT on tourism to 6.5 pct.


  1. Tourism is a horrible business. For the most part is it essentially a job for lazy fly-by-night low-paid illiterates who have few other options.

    This obsessiveness over it by some Greeks only insures Greece remains backwards like other banana republics whose only industries are tourism and agriculture. Tourists will politely say how wonderful the weather and artifacts are to one’s face – but in their heads they have little respect for the local peasants serving them cocktails and cleaning their hotel toilets of feces.

    That’s the image we are currently projecting because that’s what we currently are. Tourism has not only hurt our economy by diverting our attention away from science and industry but it even hurt us in the things like the name dispute. How can a foreigner take us seriously as a Greek… when alleged Greeks are behaving like Turks? Heck even some of the Turks have more respect for physics, mathematics and sciences than some Greeks.

  2. You really are clueless about Greece, and obviously never been outside the US but thankyou for the funniest read you’ve given us in a long time.

    Do you have any idea how many students are at and have studied at the NTUA  or at Thessaloniki? Do you have any idea how big those universities are? That most of the graduate students then take up jobs in other European countries and in the US is unfortunate, certainly not beneficial for Greece and needs to change.  But even to suggest that Greeks don’t study or respect physics, mathmatics and the sciences is ludicrous.

  3. That is why you have a bunch of spoilt Greek useless degree holders that would never put themselves down by working as a waiter. This work is seasonal but lazy Greeks would rather sleep all day & talk about history while hotel operators employ other EU citizens to work for them.

    This is why you have 60% Youth unemployment.

    Alex you retard. Instead of writing your BS on ALL propaganda forums citing hate against Turks & Macedonians, put your useless boney fingers & gold fish brain to good use & create a nuclear weapon to wipe out your enemies.

    You will be the last man standing

  4. There isn’t a single “Macedonian” in FYROM. Most of you are slavs of Bulgarian extraction.  You can call yourselves ethnic Chinese if you like too. You aren’t Chinese. 

    All you whining and hate  (and that of your Greek hating Turkish apologists that pretend not to notice your change into ancient Macedonians) – will never change the Greek writing on ancient Macedonian artifacts .All the “recognition” in the world (by Greek hating ogres that also pretend not to notice your sudden identity change) will not turn ancient Macedonians into Slavs.

    They were self-identifying  Hellenes, whose allegiance was to Hellenic culture,  language. and ideas . Since you SLAVS are anti-Hellenic both you, and your supporters, are effectively ANTI-MACEDONIAN.

  5. I am a Greek Golden Dawn voter. This is why I constantly agree with obvious Skopians like Mental Retard Kosta and refuse to denouce communist Syriza that collaberate with Skopians. Even on this very thread I say absolutely nothing to criticize Skopians trolling Greek Reporter.  I am a true Greek patriot.

  6. Hey its the guy who argues for olives, tourism, and handouts giving economic advice.

    Of course some Greeks study this classics. Heck even modern Turkish education is largely based on the Greek model. As a country though  it quite clear Greece is seriously lacking in the technology arena. To argue otherwise is ridiculous evasion of the facts (of the same sort you do when you pretend not to notice the Skopians trolling both this website and Greece)

  7. There are no Skopians trolling this website under a wide number of handles. You are all just paranoid. Trust me. I know what I’m taking about.

    Buy some olives and dioramas of the parthenon and all will be well.

  8. This is all well and good, but it is no where near enough in solving the country’s problems. Greece time and again relies on one industry solutions. Damn it we need to diversify. Tech, science, manufacturing, oil and gas exploration, research and development, encouragement of multinational companies to set up shop in the country. Not to mention expansion of small to middle size businessess. We need business parks, more technical schools. It should only take 15 minutes to obtain a business license. This stupid government needs to back the hell off the private sector. Let it expand. Public sector workers need to make a total transition into the private sector. They need not be afraid of it. It will be in their best interest in the end. WAKE UP HELLAS!!!!!!!!!!!!

  9.  I agree Alex…we should just say NO MORE TOURISM! GET OUT OF OUR COUNTRY AND DON’T VISIT IT MADERFUC* KERS!  Samaras should cut the Minister of Tourism from his government.  Instead of saying “LIVE YOUR MYTH IN GREECE” We should say…..”WHAT???? YOU WANT TO VISIT….GET DA FACK OUTTTTT”

    One more great idea from Alex! Good Job buddy?  That is why most of us on here want you are our prime minister!

  10. What do you expect from someone that gets all of his information from Wikipedia….

  11. One of the problems is the shameless far leftist parasites that keep telling Greeks its in their best interests to perpetually overly depend on the Greek state rather than their own efforts.

    It is much easier for someone lazy and incompetent to freeload money from the government than work hard and smart to build a successful business.  The problem occurs when a large chunk of the population starts thinking like this.

    They end up treating  a few politicians and rich people as being singlehandedly responsible for feeding them as if they are their mommies. Too many leftists (and anarchists) behave as if they hold no moral responsibility for their own lives. Everything is always someone else’s fault. Some distant person, they have never even met, is always to blame. Never oneself.

  12.  I prefer to get my information from the government approved school books in Skopje.

  13.  Hey Skopian… don’t you claim to support Golden Dawn now?

    We keep missing your posts in response to obvious Skopian  “mental retard kosta”… who keeps saying disparaging things about Greeks? Facinating.

    Don’t want to insult your fellow Skopian?
    Mental Retard Kosta
    Mental Retard Kosta
    Mental Retard Kosta

  14. Blah blah blah. Endless evasions.

    Did’t you claim to vote for  “Golden Dawn” Not criticism of your Skopian friend trolling this very thread? Funny how that keeps happening.

    What’s the matter Skopian? Don’t want to insult your fellow Skopian?

  15. ‘Tourism has not only hurt our economy by diverting our attention away from science and industry but it even hurt us in the things like the name dispute.’

    Tourism is but one part of the private sector, so how this, in your opinion, is reflective of your existence and identity is miraculous.

    Your diatribe against everything in our country, my diasporic friend, has reached new heights. Blaming people who make a living out of tourism for Greece’s political issues shows naivety beyond comprehension.

    Economic diversity has always been part of our social fabric!

    Its just that tourism has in the last six decades been the fastest growing employment sector and opened up far more jobs than any other sector and thus increased financial growth.  

    By the way, Turks are in the top 20 Global economies! They are certainly more economicaly savvy, what say you!  

  16. A little paranoid today aren’t we Skopian? Are you suggesting some online posters might manipulatively be using multiple handles? You of course won’t know anything about that right troll? “Alex Prime Minister of Greece” is of course your own handle on here right?

    As for your point,  I don’t know what his handle references but if its the Greek island he’s actually right phonetically.  Its pronounced a-Yio not “a-Gio”. You’ve confused yourself with a modern english convention that treats the letter yamma as “gamma” *(due to english speakers using attic and koine Greek letter pronunciations  rather than demotic)


  17. ΑΓΙΟ

    Do you pronounce it like that because all that Skopian sperm in your *ss finally got you pregnant?

  18.  World’s best beaches according to TripAdvisor’s Traveler’s Choice 2013 awards, Greece is not one of them…

    Rabbit Beach, Lampedusa, ItalyGrace Bay, Providenciales, Turks and Caicos IslandsWhitehaven Beach, Queensland, AustraliaBaia do Sancho, Fernando de Noronha, BrazilFlamenco Beach, Culebra, Puerto RicoPlaya de las Catedrales, Ribadeo, SpainLopes Mendes Beach, Ilha Grande, BrazilHorseshoe Bay Beach, Southampton Parish, BermudaEagle Beach, ArubaRhossili Bay, Swansea, WalesPlaya Paraiso Beach, Cayo Largo, CubaPlaya de ses Illetes, Formentera, SpainChesterman Beach, Tofino, CanadaPlaya del Norte, Isla Mujeres, MexicoKa’anapali Beach, Lahaina, United StatesSiesta Key Public Beach, Sarasota, Florida, United StatesAnse Lazio, Praslin Island, SeychellesGulf Islands National Seashore, Pensacola, Florida, United StatesTurquoise Bay Exmouth, Exmouth, AustraliaFort De Soto Park, Tierra Verde, Florida, United StatesAkumal Beach, Akumal, MexicoThe Baths, Virgin Gorda, British Virgin IslandsSeven Mile Beach, George Town, Grand CaymanWhite Beach, Boracay, PhilippinesWoolacombe Beach, Woolacombe, England

  19.  Once again you are wrong….the letter “Γ”  is translated into “G” and not “Y”.  But since you are also trying to reinvent the English and Greek language, whatever.  This shows that you have no idea how to speak or write Greek.

  20. Just as stupid to argue that we don’t study or have respect for these subjects eh? And you still can’t comprehend what you read.

    In my saying above, that it is unfortunate that our technological graduates are forced to take up jobs overseas instead of in Greece is in agreement with you twit, in other words that we are lacking in the technology field.

  21. Sure buddy. You were in “agreement” with me. This is why you started off your rant with “you are clueless” Nice waffling there troll.

  22. Can you read pretentious moron? The English are using an ancient Greek pronunciation of Gamma. Not the modern Demonic one of Yamma.

    Its not aye Gamisou. Its aye Yamisou. Please feel free to do so.

  23.  Yes. Lets focus on olive oil and tourists trinckets rather than technology and industry like the Skopian suggests.

    Hey dude, I thought you claimed to be support Golden Dawn? We keep missing your posts when it comes time to criticizing Skopians and Syriza trolling this website. And how is your Skopian pal “Mental Retard Kosta” these days?

  24. We should be far more interested in relevant fields in technology rather than tourism. Tourism is like McDonalds. A low paying industry for mostly illiterates who can’t find employment in a skilled field. Even circus clowns have far more skills than a typical full time worker in tourist industry.

    One reason why Jews are so influential in the world today is precisely because they focus on companies that either produce technology or leverage it to get productivity gains. (thus decreasing the cost of products they sell or producing products others cant)
    It is no accident when it comes to technology the number one country in the world (per capita)… is Israel.

    As a country we can chose to follow the lazy logic of the last forty years and stick to tourism like countries like Jamaica or Tahiti — or focus on technology. The former is easy but will only ensure a  low standard of living and keep Greece a backwater. The latter is much harder but will create wealth and progress.

  25.  We all agree that you are clueless…what’s wrong with the truth??

  26.  So you are writing in Ancient Greeklish?  Would you like for the resdt of our comments to be in Greek with actual Greek letters?  Would you be able to understand that and understand?

  27.  By “we’ I mean any Skopian that trolls this website like I do and any Greek leftist I can find stupid enough to agree with me.

  28. Hey Skopian who claims to be a Greek golden Dawn supporter…

    rather strange you never criticize Skopians or their Syrizas supporters no? Rather strange you keep defending or agreeing with leftists and Skopian posters on this website no? How is your Skopian friend “Mental Retard Kosta” doing these days?

  29. You are just repeating yourself you illlerate.

    Gamma is English pronouncation using ancient Greek dialect. In modern Greek it is pronouced Yamma.

    So where did you learn to speak Greek Skopian? Do you have any relatives in Florina region?

  30. Because you are clueless troll, but amongst your usual inane, illinformed, repetitious crap you actually said one thing that pertains to the current situation in Greece. It was a major break through so keep up the good work, you may get it one day. 

  31. Tourism has hurt our economy. Other than they owners of companies, it is primarily for workers that are illiterates.  If we didn’t have a single tourism job, and instead had more physicists, engineers, mathematicians, biologists and other scientists — Greece  would be paradise on earth.

    Tourism has also hurt us in the name dispute. You claim I am against Greece and Greek things. Its pseudo-Greeks like you who are against Greek things How can any Greek take pseudo- “Greeks” like you seriously as a Greek when you define Hellenism by serving drinks and selling crap to tourists rather than through the arts and sciences.  You are an embarrassment to the mighty name Greek. You would best call yourself Turkish. You behave like one.


    Your diatribe against everything in our country,

    Your diatribe against everything in our country,

  32.  Instead of directing your attention to the Skopian below… you attack Greeks that argue in defence of Hellenism?   (something you seem to equate with serving tequilas to tourists)

    What kind of alleged “Greek” are you? Perhaps of the Skopian variety pretending to be Greek on this website? (see Skopian Mental Retard Kosta below)

    Whatever the case you strike me more as Turkish than Greek.

  33.  Like you care about “truth” Skopian.

    Didnt’ you claim to support Golden Dawn troll? No one can find your posts condemning Skopians and Syriza. All anyone can find is you constantly defending leftists and Skopians on this website (including your Skopian pal Mental Retard Kosta)

  34. You discuss macro-economic and foreign policy but you are so clueless you didn’t even notice the Skopians trolling this website pretending to be Greeks. Pseudo-intellectual troll like the Skopians you refuse to denouce that agree with you on this website.

  35. Once again you evade cricizing another Ksopian trolling this website and run to defense of leftist choralife…. yet claim to support XA!

    Don’t think the actually Greek patriots on this website don’t notice troll

  36.  You keep saying “we”, “us” and “everyone”.

    You do not speak for everyone here troll. You only speak for your fellow Skopians and the morons that are stupid enough to play along with you.