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More Easter hotel bookings by Greeks at popular destinations

By Stathis Kousounis

Hotel bookings from the domestic market for this Easter period are going fairly well according to representatives of local tourism bodies, although certain destinations will have a smaller number of hotel units operating compared with last year.

In 2013 Easter was in May, so more hotels had opened in anticipation of international holidaymakers as well as Greeks. Accommodation rates appear to be the same as last year, tourism professionals say.

Bookings for Santorini are on the rise “both by Greeks and foreign tourists,” according to the president of the local hoteliers’ union, Manolis Karamolegos. The extra weekly Aegean Airlines flight from Athens, which started this month, and the increased capacity of international planes flying to the island has helped boost visitor numbers, while the fact that Easter falls on the same Sunday for both the Eastern and Western churches this year has also played a role, he added.

His counterpart from Corfu, Dimitris Diavatis, has also reported a rise in bookings, but he added that while all Corfu Town hotels are now open, some units outside the town will remain closed due to the early Easter.

Most hotels on Naxos have opened and ferry tickets to the Cyclades island have virtually sold out, though mainly to people from Naxos, said the general secretary of the island’s hoteliers’ association, Yiannis Margaritis.

“All hotels in the city of Hania have opened ahead of Easter,” said Manolis Yiannoulis, president of the local hoteliers’ association, as more flights from abroad have bolstered hotel occupancy rates. Still, about 50 percent of hotels across the prefecture are yet to open.

Finally, bookings for Rhodes from the Greek market have increased compared with 2013, in the words of the vice president of the island’s association of hoteliers, Anta Karayianni. Several top hotels have opened for Easter both in Rhodes Town and in other areas of the island, she said, adding there are several attractive packages that include flights from Athens and Thessaloniki. She noted that the average price for a double room with breakfast in a four-star hotel comes to 75 euros per night.

ekathimerini.com , Sunday April 13, 2014 (20:59)  
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