Greece has set out its five-year tourism development plan, based around more year-round flights, key new products such as city breaks and a focus on further promoting Greece’s rich gastronomy culture and lesser-known destinations.

The Secretary General of Greece's Ministry of Tourism, Dimitris Fragakis, emphasized that the main goal of the Greece National Tourist Office in 2024 is to continue promoting Greece as a brand. To achieve this, GNTO is collaborating with airlines and tour operators to extend the tourist season, with Rhodes and Crete still welcoming visitors in November this year.

“There’s also an appetite for hidden gems and new destinations from these companies,” Fragakis said, highlighting the easterly region of Evros, parts of the Peloponnese and smaller islands such as Tilos and Kimolos as places that were ripe for tourism development.

Kimolos Blue water

“Authenticity is our strength when it comes to these kinds of destinations,” he added.

This year will set a new milestone for Greek tourism. Although full-year figures are yet to be released, numbers for January to August show an increase in overall revenue from tourism of 15% year-on-year, while arrivals have increased by 13-14% depending on the airport.

“We strongly believe it will be a new record year,” he said, adding that while a string of wildfires this summer had local impacts, there was no overall negative impact on tourism.

“This is my fourth year at the ministry,” he continued. “We have proved that we can operate through crises and challenges. In my first week, Thomas Cook collapsed, and then we had the pandemic. We have the refugee crisis at our borders, the inflation crisis, the climate crisis. We have learned to act in a crisis – we have the mechanisms to adapt, and tourism is a hardy industry.”

A quarter of Greece’s GDP comes from tourism, with the industry employing one million people. “Tourism is incredibly important for our social cohesion policies,” he added.

Copyright Greekcitytimes 2024