Record drop in av­er­age spend­ing by hol­i­day­mak­ers

Kathimerini English - - Focus - STATHIS KOUSOUNIS

The an­nual drop in spend­ing per trip by for­eign tourists in Greece in the first nine months of the year was the big­gest of the last decade, ac­cord­ing to data re­leased by the Bank of Greece.

Av­er­age spend­ing per visit in the Jan­uary-Septem­ber pe­riod this year amounted to 546.60 eu­ros, down 9.3 per­cent from 2015. In Septem­ber alone av­er­age spend­ing came to 523.40 eu­ros, down 10.1 per­cent from Septem­ber 2015, which was also the big­gest an­nual drop this decade for that month.

This de­vel­op­ment con­firms tourism pro­fes­sion­als’ warn­ings that Greece would this year at­tract bud­get hol­i­day­mak­ers that didn’t travel to Turkey due to the po­lit­i­cal and se­cu­rity prob­lems in the neigh­bor­ing coun­try. For­eign vis­i­tors made the most of the spe­cial of­fers made by Greek hote­liers to bol­ster de­mand, so tourism rev­enues de­clined.

The pro­file of vis­i­tors to ri­val des­ti­na­tion Spain was so dif­fer­ent that av­er­age spend­ing per trip to the Ibe­rian coun­try dur­ing the same pe­riod came to 92.1 per­cent more than in Greece, at 1,005 eu­ros.

In the first nine months of 2016 Greece suf­fered a ma­jor de­cline in tak­ings from US tourists, amount­ing to 26.7 per­cent, or 228.2 mil­lion eu­ros from 2015. French vis­i­tors spent 24.3 per­cent less, Ger­mans re­duced their spend­ing by 10.4 per­cent, and Bri­tons parted with 5.6 per­cent less money this year.

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