ECONOMY

Early 2016 bookings from the UK show 6 pct y-o-y rise

early-2016-bookings-from-the-uk-show-6-pct-y-o-y-rise

Early bookings from the British tourism market for 2016 are showing an average growth rate of 6 percent from 2015, the head of Greek tourism entrepreneurs told Kathimerini.

Following his preliminary contacts with foreign tour operator representatives at the World Travel Market in London, the president of the Association of Hellenic Tourism Enterprises (SETE), Andreas Andreadis, said that this positive start to next season is attributed to the help coming from external factors such as the exchange rate of the British pound against the euro and the general instability in neighboring destinations, including Turkey.

Foreign tour operator have also shown a positive response to the decision by Greek hoteliers to absorb most of the value-added tax increase on accommodation and food service.

While the first signs for 2016 may be positive, Andreadis added that they should not allow the local tourism industry to be complacent ahead of next season’s main target: “That target is the shielding of the competitiveness of the Greek tourism product, which must overcome a series of direct challenges, such as overtaxation, illegal accommodation, boosting investor interest and corporate liquidity, and the resolution of biometric visa problems,” he said.