Greece aiming for record breaking year in tourism

Cruise ship in Chania - library photo via — Tourism is one area of the Greek economy that is booming; so much so that tourism officials are forecasting a record-breaking year.

“The figures for international airline arrivals at Athens airport are constantly touching new highs since the start of the year, with the first six months ending with an increase of 4.4 pct,” Alternate Tourism Minister Elena Kountoura said to the Greek newspaper “Xoni.”

Bookings are driven by an influx of Brits traveling to Greece. There is also an increase in Russian visitors after political upheaval in Turkey has kept Russians away.

“In the first five months of 2016 alone, arrivals [of Russians] increased by more than 47 pct compared with the same period in 2015,” Kountoura said, adding that most of Greece’s major tourist markets were showing an increase, including last-minute bookings.

Cruise is another bright spot and more and more, Greece is becoming a popular homeport for ships in the Mediterranean.