ECONOMY

Easter hotel bookings at a slower pace

Bookings for the upcoming Orthodox Easter weekend are showing a mixed picture, with numbers differing from one destination to another.

According to the president of the Hellenic Hoteliers Federation (HHF), Yiannis Retsos, last-minute bookings are expected to define activity in the holiday period. He attributes sluggish bookings mainly to uncertainty regarding economic developments. Another factor is that the Easter holidays coincide with the time when a large number of citizens have the opportunity to settle debts to the state and social security funds on favorable terms.

Moreover, the fact that Easter for Catholics, Protestants and Orthodox is earlier than usual this year, has prompted a number of hoteliers to postpone opening until the end of the month.

Arachova hoteliers report a satisfactory 80 percent occupancy rate for Easter, attributed to the proximity to Athens and the continued operation of the nearby Parnassos ski center. Kalavryta hotels have seen a rise in interest in the last week, taking the rate to 70 percent for Easter, but in Pilio, near Volos, bookings have frozen in recent days at 60-70 percent.

Corfu has traditionally been overbooked during Easter but there is still room availability even now, according to the head of local hoteliers, Panayiotis Bramos.