Christmas destinations in Greece are over 90% full! Which areas are the public choosing

winter christmas

This year, the winter destinations in Greece will record a high occupancy level during the fortnight of the holidays (Christmas-New Year's Eve and Lights), even reaching over 90%, as reported by industry players.

Major protagonists this year are the areas with theme parks, Drama and Trikala in Thessaly; as the general secretary of the Panhellenic Federation of Hoteliers, Angelos Kallias, points out to AMNA, it is considered certain that the offer of available beds in these areas will not cover the increased demand that already observed.

These days, however, bookings for Greek destinations are always at 30% to 40% in terms of hotel occupancy, but as we approach the holiday season, the occupancy of open hotels in the country's winter destinations will approach 85% and 90% in total, says Mr Kallias.

Giving an indication of the reservations in the hotels of the mountainous massif, Angelos Kallias states that the peak of the reservations will be observed from December 22 to January 7, when the arrivals will reach their zenith. However, during the intervening days of the holidays (Tuesday - Thursday, bookings drop to 40%), explains the general secretary of the Panhellenic Federation of Hoteliers.

Where will the Greeks go on holiday during the holiday season?

The areas that traditionally start during the holiday season, in addition to the theme parks, are those with ski resorts, such as Arachova and the wider area of ​​Parnassos, Drama, Kalavryta, etc. In any case, as he notes in AMNA, the president of the Federation of Travel Agencies in Greece Lysandros Tsilidis, Epirus, Zagorochoria, Tzoumerka, Xanthi, Kavala, Alexandroupoli, Arcadia, Trikala Corinthia and Peloponnese in general, will have significant traffic during the holiday period, as he emphasises.

An indicator of the dynamics of areas with theme parks is the impression of bookings in drama. As Mr. Kallias reports, bookings are already at 85%, while for the holiday season, not a pin will fall, as he noted. After all, Drama is the only region that this year will have an incoming tourist flow from the Balkans, at a time when almost all the country's winter destinations do not attract a measurable tourist flow from abroad, as the POX director reminds.

Pelion is back on the map of winter tourism.

Special mention should also be made of Pelion and Magnesia in general, as they are re-entering the country's tourist map, and this year's holidays will be the first test of winter tourism for them. As Mr. Kallias says, the messages are good, and occupancy will exceed 80%, always based on the accommodations that have opened during the winter season. As far as the urban centres are concerned, see Athens and Thessaloniki; always during the holiday season, they are a pole of attraction for the Greeks living in the District and are expected to move with good occupancy.

The country's urban centres have great scope for development.

At this point, the vice-president of XEE, Christina Tetradis, mentions to AMNA that other urban centres must follow the standards of Athens and Thessaloniki so that they become a pole of attraction for domestic tourism. Mrs Tetradis talks about the need to draw up a strategy that should consider this parameter as well, always to prolong the tourist season but also decompressing some areas from the increased tourist flow of the period for the benefit of the other regions of Greece. He also believes that it would be beneficial for the quality of the tourist experience as well as the diffusion of tourist revenues to establish other days for holidays, in schools and in general in the public sector, so that there is not this one-dimensional descent of Greeks for holidays on specific days in time.

Which foreign countries will the Greeks prefer for holidays this year?

Some of the Greeks would also prefer to travel outside the country's walls this year. As Mr Tsilidis says, the tourist packages allocated for abroad are reduced by 20% compared to last year due to inflationary pressures and the fear of travel caused by the war in Ukraine and Israel. It is characteristic that travel agencies dealing with religious tourism have been particularly affected.

In any case, travel packages from Greece to Italy went well; Spain is moving at a record pace, while Greeks will find themselves in London, Vienna, Budapest, and Paris, with the Christmas parks stealing the show, underlines Mr Tslidis. However, This year, the packages abroad are a little more expensive than last year because of the plane tickets, highlights Mr Tsilidis. In any case, choosing a 5-day tourist package for a Central European country costs 600 euros to 700 euros per person.

What taste does the first test for domestic tourism leave for tourism entrepreneurs

In response to what "taste" the first test for domestic tourism leaves for tourist entrepreneurs, Mr Kallias notes: "Winter tourism cannot support the operation of hotels. We are talking about a period of 130 days, of which 35 are essentially those that have increased volume of work. With 25% occupancy in the accommodations overall in the winter season, the viability of the hotels in the mountainous massif is the big bet this year as well."

At this point, Mr. Kallias and Mrs. Tetradis note the weakness of the Greek winter destinations to attract visitors from abroad. After January 17th, the hotels will not ring; Mr Kallias emphasises and asks: "Have we properly promoted Greece abroad?"

READ MORE: Christmas in Corfu is an experience in itself.

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