Greece is expected to face a record-breaking tourist season this year. The percentage of people booking holidays to Greece from the United States has risen by 42.7%. The U.S currently operate four flights per day to Greece.
According to reports by the Greek Tourism Confederation, expect another busy season regarding tourism. It's a welcomed piece of news as the tourism industry has long been one of the largest contributors towards the job market and economy in Greece. Reports claim that as many as 25 million people could enter Greece, this figure could increase to 27.5 million if cruise ship passengers are included. The economic recovery of the country will lie heavily on the tourism sector.
Russians and Americans are among the biggest tourism spenders. Statistics show that around 800,000 Americans visited Greece last year, and this figure could grow even more this year.
Las week a Greek-American newspaper launched its 7th campaign to encourage both philhellenes and Americans to go to Greece this summer with the aim of meeting their challenge to get over 1 million visitors!
Travel guidance released by the U.S. Department of State indicates that the tourism in areas such as Paris, Brussels and Istanbul seem to be affected by recent terror attacks. Athens, Rome, and Dublin appear to be unaffected and are grateful for the huge tourism boost.
Allianz Global Assistance conducted a comprehensive analysis of more than 500,000 flight bookings, focusing on Americans' vacation plans starting from Memorial Day to Labor Day. The results showed that there is a 43.7% decrease in visitors to Istanbul in 2016 compared to the same times last year. There is also a 30.4% fall in visitors to Brussels. Germany has been affected too as they saw a drop by 22.9% of people visiting from America. Despite recent attacks, the number of visitors from American to Paris has only fallen by 0.6%. These figures indicate that Paris is still the second most popular place for Americans behind London.
Despite significant countries witnessing a steep decrease in American visitors, overall there was a 9.3% increase in the number of U.S. citizens visiting Europe as a whole when compared to statistics from 2015.
Many cities have reaped the benefits of Americans choosing different travel destinations. Dublin and Shannon gained a 42.8% and 46.5% hike in travelers, respectively. Also, Athens has seen a 42.7% increase closely followed by Portugal (42.3%) and Netherlands (34.5%).
A spokesperson for Allianz Global Assistance explains how Americans are still keen to travel to Europe. Tourists seek safety in traditionally famous destinations like Rome and London and more recently cities like Amsterdam, Lisbon, and Dublin. Despite recent acts of horrific terrorism, it's a real sight to witness many people still traveling to Europe this summer. There is also a sharp increase in the number of those purchasing travel insurance as a safeguard should customers want to cancel or delay their bookings. Under travel policies, customers have the right to cancel or postpone their trip if a terrorist event occurs within 30 days of their expected arrival.
After closer inspection, it's clear that there is still hope for the tourism sectors in Europe.