Greece Tourism Report Q3 2011
- ID: 1838265
- June 2011
- Region: Greece
- 65 Pages
- Business Monitor International
Business Monitor International's Greece Tourism Report provides industry professionals and strategists, corporate analysts, tourism associations, government departments and regulatory bodies with independent forecasts and competitive intelligence on Greece's tourism industry.
After a fall in foreign visitor arrivals to Greece of more than 5% year-on-year (y-o-y) in H110, official Greek data show that there was a recovery in H2. Overall, visitors increased a marginal 0.6% in 2010, compared with a year earlier. Concerning source markets, the EU recorded a 6.3% fall y-o-y in arrivals during the year, with Germany and the UK – the most important source markets in 2010 – showing significant negative growth of nearly -14% and -15% y-o-y respectively. Furthermore, arrivals from France and Italy – other key markets – both fell by an annual 10%.
The number of visitors from the US were also down more than 6% y-o-y. By contrast, arrivals from Serbia-Montenegro, Russia and Poland increased substantially, by some 42%, 64% and 98% y-o-y respectively. Domestic tourism was also particularly badly hit in 2010 by the Greek recession.
The hospitality sector remained in a poor state in 2010, mainly driven by weak domestic tourism. According to data from Eurostat, there were 62.7mn nights spent in hotels in Greece in 2010, of which 16.4mn were by Greek residents and 46.3mn by foreign residents. This represented an annual decline of 2.3% y-o-y in total nights, which was largely the result of weak demand by Greek residents (-10.8%), while demand by foreign tourists grew 0.8%. The biggest percentage decline in the number of nights during the year was recorded in the period January-April (-5.6% y-o-y), followed by September- December (-2.1%) and May-August (-1.8%).
After a disappointing out-turn for foreign arrivals in 2010 (albeit a sharp improvement on negative growth in 2009), the report maintains a view of modest recovery in growth of visitor numbers in 2011 and 2012. Domestic tourism, however, is expected to remain extremely weak due to a full-blown economic depression in Greece. The short-term outlook for foreign visitors is partly based on BMI’s expectation of steady European recovery.
In the Eurozone, an important source market, the revised forecasts are for economic growth of 1.8% in 2011 (up marginally on growth in 2010), with similar growth expected in 2012. The report’s revised economic growth forecasts for the UK – the key market for inbound tourism – stand at 1.7% and 2.2% in 2011 and 2012 respectively (after growth estimated at 1.3% in 2010). Ongoing social unrest in Greece over austerity measures designed to save the economy, however, is likely to undermine the tourism industry by damaging the image of Greece abroad.
From March, Spain’s Spanair and Greek carrier Aegean Airlines began code-share flights from Barcelona and Madrid to Athens. Aegean launched new flights in March between Larnaka (Cyprus) and London, while from June the airline commenced flights between Larnaka and Paris. Also in June, Aegean strengthened connections between Cyprus and Greece with six new flight destinations in Greece from Larnaka (Heraklion, Rhodes, Mykonos, Chania, Kos and Santorini). From April, new flights were introduced from Athens to Moscow and Bologna, and from Thessaloniki to Moscow and Paris.
In March, following the European Commission rejection of a merger plan with Aegean Airlines, Greece’s Olympic Air announced its intention to restructure its domestic and international programme of flights. The aim is to enhance its position in the South East European market. Also in March, Olympic Air and Cyprus Airways commenced a code-share agreement.
Athens International Airport:
Total passenger numbers at Athens International Airport (AIA) fell in every year from 2008 to 2010. After sharp negative growth y-o-y in total traffic in December 2010 (partly attributed to bad weather), more recent figures suggest another difficult year for the airport in 2011. Data for Q111 show traffic down a severe 16% y-o-y, with international and domestic passenger numbers falling 9% and more than 25% respectively. SHOW LESS READ MORE >
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Table: Arrivals Data, 2007-2015 (‘000)
Table: Accommodation Data, 2007-2015 (‘000)
Table: Expenditure And Economic Impact, 2007-2015
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