NEW YORK – After Americans were barred entry in 2020 as the world’s hottest COVID-19 spot, they are seen to be keen to get to Greece this year for vacations if allowed and the pandemic ends or winds down enough to make it safe.
While the vaccination program in the U.S. is facing even greater shortages than in Greece, where it’s also far behind schedule, online searches over the last six months monitored by Google and analyzed by web travel marketplace Koala show Greece the favored destination, said Kathimerini.
Americans represent a big part of the Greece tourism market, especially Greek-Americans who couldn’t get to see their homeland or families when they were left out of a safe arrivals list.
When it comes to European destinations, Greece is the most searched-for country, accounting for about 247,000 searches in that period by US users, with Iceland a surprising second with 189,000 searches, the paper said.
Koala commented that “it appears many have their eyes set on the birthplace of democracy, with ancient historical roots and magnificent temples,” not to mention sun, sand, beaches, islands, food and famous hospitality.
Otherwise, sticking closer to home, most want closer trips, with Puerto Rico the most popular spot despite still reeling from a massive hurricane and natural disasters, but a U.S. territory lure.
The top five, besides Puerto Rico (580,100 searches) also includes Mexico, the Maldives, Japan and Jamaica.
Mike Kennedy, Koala’sCo-founder CEO said, “Beaches factor as the number one most searched trips for the American traveler. While Puerto Rico ranks #1 in searches, Americans are by no means limiting themselves to destinations close to home; wanderlust is alive and well.”