Report: Pandemic Dampened Greek Tourism's Strong Performance

Αssociated Press

Tourists from the United Kingdom arrive at Athens International Airport after pandemic-related restrictions were lifted by Greece, at Spata, east of Athens on July 16, 2020. (AP Photo/Petros Giannakouris)

ATHENS -- The coronavirus pandemic put the brakes on the positive performance of Greece's tourism industry in 2017-2019, INSETE Intelligence - the research body of the Greek Tourism Confederation SETE - said in a report on Thursday.

In an analysis of tourism trends in the 13 regions of the country, INSETE said that the number of visits in the 13 regions of the country in the 2017-2019 period rose 18 pct to 36.6 million, while tourism revenue grew 24 pct to 17.7 billion euros. Average spending per visit per region in Greece grew 5.0 pct in 2019 compared with 2017 to 482 euros, with all regions with the exception of Central Greece, Epirus and Eastern Macedonia-Thrace recording a positive percentage change in average spending.

More specifically, visits were down 7.0 pct and revenue up 21 pct in central Macedonia (average spending rose 30 pct). In the South Aegean, visits were up 18 pct, revenue was up 42 pct and average spending rose 20 pct. In Attica, visits rose 15 pct, revenue were up 24 pct and average spending rose 8.0 pct. In Crete, visits were up 10 pct, revenue was up 10 pct and average spending edged up 0.4 pct. In Ionian Islands, visits rose 3.0 pct, revenue rose 8.0 pct and average spending was up 5 pct. In Eastern Macedonia-Thrace, visits were up 184 pct, revenue rose 56 pct and average spending fell 45 pct. In the Peloponnese, visits rose 24 pct, revenue up 36 pct and average spending rose 10 pct. In Epirus, visits rose 45 pct, revenue up 21 pct and average spending fell 17 pct. In Western Greece, visits were up 45 pct, revenue jumped 62 pct and average spending rose 12 pct. In Central Greece, visits jumped 91 pct, revenue rose 59 pct and average spending fell 12 pct. In Northern Aegean, visits fell 1 pct, revenue was down 1 pct and average spending rose 0.5 pct. In Western Macedonia, visits rose 37 pct, revenue was up 68 pct and average spending rose 22 pct. In Thessaly, visits were up 16 pct, revenue rose 23 pct and average spending up 5 pct.

International air passenger traffic jumped 46 pct in the 2014-2019 period to 21.6 million passengers.