Representatives of Greece’s tourism sector returned from London’s World Travel Market with a double digit increase in early reservations from the UK in their baggage.
Early reservations from the British market have risen from last year by between 12-15 percent. But industry experts say it is unclear if the increased demand can be met with the available beds at top tourist destinations.
The large increase in early demand is due to a combination of regional factors, including high prices in Spain, continuing problems in Turkey, and British holidaymakers’ increased interest in Greece.
Yannis Retsos, the president of the Association of Greek Tourism Enterprises, appears guardedly optimistic and stresses that the Greek market must remain competitive. He notes that there is not enough data yet to assess the overall picture for the 2018 tourist season.
There is a large percentage of online reservations from the UK, and Retsos says that a number of initiatives are required to ensure the competitiveness of the Greek market.
SETE is particularly keen on averting an accommodations tax, which is seen as impeding the development of healthy entrepreneurship.
“We must invest in a strategy of holistic, viable growth, armed with positive synergies and an understanding of the currents and trends in the international market,” Retsos said.
“Tourism requires a comprehensive strategy, perpetual vigilance, and constant adjustments, whenever and wherever needed. In 2018, Greek tourism enterprises will be a state of readiness to confront ever increasing international competition and other issues, such as over-taxation of the tourism product,” the SETE chief concludes.