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Minister Kountoura: Greece aims to break 2015 record for tourist arrivals

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The governments aim is to break the record set in 2015, when there were more than 26 million arrivals from abroad and tourism revenue reached 14.1 billion euros, Alternate Tourism Minister Elena Kountoura said in an interview with the Greek newspaper Xoni on Sunday.


"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," she noted, while the figures were even more encouraging in regional airports, where the increase was 9 pct in July and 10 pct in August, and in Greek ports.


She pointed to a recent announcement by the British travel agencies union that bookings by UK tourists to Greece had increased 5 pct this summer, saying this was cause for optimism, while also noting a sharp increase in the number of Russian tourists.
"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 reported, adding that most of Greeces major tourist markets were showing an increase, including last-minute bookings.


The minister said Greece was now seeking to promote the year-round options offered by the country, such as cultural, religious, sports, outdoors and city-break tourism, while expressing satisfaction with the growth of the cruise sector.


"The port of Piraeus has already received the largest number of cruise ships and visitors this year and has the option of becoming established as a popular homeport in the Mediterranean," she said.


Greeces aim was to retain its international appeal as an attractive destination offering unique, authentic experiences at a very good price-to-quality ratio and with a sense of safety and security for visitors, Kountoura added.

 

Source: ANA-MPA

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