ATHENS – Falling just a little short of setting a record in revenues spent by tourists in 2022 during the waning COVID-19 pandemic, Greece did get another record for the sector, with more than 31 million airport arrivals.
That surpassed the previous benchmark set in 2019, before the Coronavirus struck in March, 2020 and essentially shut down most international air traffic and brought lockdowns and slowdowns just about halting travel.
The data came from the management firm operator Fraport, which operates regional airports across he country since they were privatized, key to bringing tourists to regions other than the major cities.
Tourism Minister Vassilis Kikilias said the numbers showed campaigns to bring people were working, after the New Democracy government ended health measures to deal with the pandemic, opening to arrivals.
“I know – and they know it, everyone – that Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis is making a big effort to restore the marble of the Parthenon. I could not know exactly what the discussions are, but tourism and culture, and the people of tourism and culture, are inextricably linked. And this is a great legacy for the country. Cultural heritage and tourism heritage together,” the Minister also noted, SchengenVisaInfo.com reported.
He said that 2023 will be another strong year as the ministry is trying to make the country a year-round destination and strong numbers through autumn into the first part of the winter too.
Tourism revenues in October 2022 reached 1.5 billion euros ($1.63 billion,) driven by tourists from the United Kingdom, registering a 69.2 percent increase, Germany at 10.6 percent more and France with 6 percent compared to 2019.