Greece and Spain are vying for top spot in the chart of countries European travelers choose for their holidays this summer, with Spain slightly ahead for now. However, on a regional level, Crete is by far the top pick of Europeans, according to the annual TUI Holiday Atlas Summer 2022.
The report by the continent’s biggest tour operator reflects the data it collects from its bookings platforms and sales channels. Crete is followed by Majorca and the Canary Islands in Spain, but then there’s another Greek entry in Rhodes.
Greece continues to enjoy strong demand, as it did last year, and is preferred especially by visitors from the Scandinavian countries and France. TUI notes that demand is focused mainly on Crete, Rhodes and Kos, while the Turkish market is bouncing back this year.
In its report, TUI also notes that despite international political and economic developments, in the last few weeks it has observed “positive demand across all European countries, and at the same time a trend in favor of higher-value holidays. TUI visitors are planning higher budgets for their summer holidays.”
At the end of January, the average rate of the average planned budget for this summer was 22% higher than in the summer of 2021. This is attributed to increased demand for offers of higher value and more additional services, such as for hotel or room upgrades and journeys or activities at the holiday destinations. “The trend toward short-term bookings continues, and in the summer of 2022 we expect it to be close to the pre-crisis levels,” TUI estimates.
Due to the high level of bookings TUI has received for holidays in Greece, the German-headquartered tour operator has already decided to start its summer season for Greece earlier than ever – from early April – focusing on Crete, Rhodes and Kos.
While France, Sweden, Denmark and Norway have Greece as their number one choice, according to the bookings already made, British travelers appear to be mostly opting for the Turkish Riviera, with Egypt and Greece in second and third place. For the German, Austrian and Swiss markets, the top destinations are Majorca, Antalya, Crete, Rhodes and Kos.