Decline in visitor numbers to end-February


Incoming tourism has got off to a negative start in 2017, according to data on air, land and sea arrivals and total revenues as reported on Wednesday by the Greek Tourism Confederation (SETE).

Road arrivals in the first two months of the year were down 60,000 from the same period in 2016, while air arrivals were up 18,000 and sea arrivals increased 1,500 on an annual basis, for a total reduction of about 40,000 in visitor numbers. Travel receipts also posted a decline in January.

However, the Institute of SETE maintains its positive projections for the year as a whole despite strong signs of uncertainty in the country given the delays in the completion of the second bailout review as well as broader geopolitical developments.

SETE estimates that total arrivals this year will come to 28 million while forecasting revenues of 14.2-14.5 billion euros. These optimistic predictions are supported by booking data from major international tour operators based on increased demand for air seats to Greece for the summer, improved consumer confidence in Greek tourism’s main markets (with the exception of Italy and the UK) and international surveys pointing to an increase in global tourism.