Following the election of the conservative ‘pro-Euro’ New Democracy party in Greece last week, many travel operators are reporting a surge in bookings to the country this summer.
With fears that Greece could drop out of the Eurozone now out of the way, bookings have reportedly increased quite significantly.
Hugh Morgan, managing director of Monarch Travel Group, said he was confident of improved last-minute bookings this summer and autumn. “It’s a very late market, but much more positive than a few weeks ago,” he said.
Another industry expert, John Kent, founder of Youtravel.com and Aquis Hotels & Resorts, said press coverage had exaggerated disruption, following news reports on demonstrations in Athens.
Greece has consistently been one of the top 10 travel destinations worldwide and a popular timeshare destination. Some 14.2 million visitors visited the country in 2004 (the year of the Olympics), over 17 million visitors arrived in 2008 and although bookings to Greece are down this year compared to last, bookings on flights to the Greek Islands were up by 15% this spring, compared to the same period last year.
Uncertainty surrounding the elections and the future of the euro in Greece has affected visitor figures this year, although with almost three months of warm summer weather in Greece still ahead until the end of September, bookings could still pick up.