Tourism Minister Haris Theocharis was particularly optimistic about this year’s tourist season.
“Given the conditions, the country is doing very well. In the first ten days of July in Heraklion, Crete, we reached 83% of [tourist arrivals of] 2019. In total, at the regional airports, we are about 55% to 60% of 2019 and at the Athens airport in the last few days we have reached 65% of 2019. The data are encouraging for the time being,” Mr Theocharis told Ant-1.
Regarding the “Tourism for all” program, which expires today, the Minister of Tourism said that “we will see if the demand for the program continues and we will consider the possibility of giving a new extension”.
Regarding the increase of Covid-19 cases and how this affects tourism, Mr. Theocharis noted that “the increase of cases must be closely monitored” and added that “we will take whatever measures are needed, because we do not want other countries to be quarantined. If the increase in cases continues, there is no way we can save it.”
At the same time, the Minister of Tourism appealed to everyone to be vaccinated, while he did not want to make a prediction for this year’s movement in tourism, as he said this year is very difficult. As he said, Greece is first in preferences in France and the USA and stressed that “the image of our country has improved for this and we are desirable again. We have to remain in quality and keep the cases low so people will come,” he stressed.
For seasonal workers and tourism companies, he stressed that the government’s support was continuous and everywhere, adding that even now “we will be close to both businesses and employees”.