BUSINESS

Tourism revenue down in 1st half before peaking in summer

TAGS: Tourism, Economy

Before a spike in July and August, tourism accommodation and food service enterprises had suffered a notable drop in turnover during the first half of the year according to data released on Tuesday by the Hellenic Statistical Authority (ELSTAT).

The sector recorded a 1.1 percent annual drop in the period from April to June compared to last year.

It came on the heels of an 11.2 percent plunge from January to March.

According to official data released by the Bank of Greece, travel receipts for Greece since the beginning of the year have also shown a drop of 5.8 percent, which is equivalent to 242 million euros in lost revenue.

Figures for July will be released by the Bank of Greece next week.

Tourism arrivals were also down in the first six months of the year.

However, things picked up in July and August, primarily due to the political problems in rival tourist destinations like Turkey and Egypt.  A slice of this pie also also went to Spain, Cyprus and Portugal.

According to preliminary data from the Association of Hellenic Tourism Enterprises, international arrivals to Greece, from January to August, reached 20.65 million, an increase of 450,000, compared to the same eight-month period last year.

International flight arrivals posted a rise of 750,000 or 6.5 percent from January to August, while land arrivals decreased to the tune of 320,000 or 3.8 percent.

With arrivals from Russia on the rise, authorities are also planning a conference on Rethymno, Crete with the participation of Greek and Russian tourist organizations.

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