The Greek National Tourism Organization (GNTO) is expecting a record-breaking 30 million international visitors to Greece this year.
This represents a growth rate of 7%, or an additional two million additional visitors over the previous year.
For the last two years, Greece’s growth has been nearly twice the global industry average of 3.9%, as reported by the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) in January.
The World Travel & Tourism Council estimates that tourism in 2017 will help boost the Greek economy by 6.9%, and will boost employment by 6.3%, supporting nearly a million jobs and representing 20% of the country’s GDP. One in five jobs created in Greece is related to the tourism sector, which is essential to the country’s effort for recovery and prosperity.
“We are very optimistic about the upcoming tourist season and our continued momentum,” said Greek Tourism Minister Elena Kountoura. “Greece’s incomparable natural beauty, ancient history, vibrant urban culture and spirit of ‘philotimo’ make it one of the world’s most unique and desired year-round destinations.”
Taleb Rifai, UNWTO Secretary General, shared his full support of Greece and GNTO while visiting Athens earlier this year.
“Greece is one of the most popular and attractive global destinations, which enhances its international appeal and continues to record high performance,” said Rifai. “Over the last two years, Greece has successfully addressed all challenges by implementing a new tourism policy focused on extending the travel season, promoting new thematic products, opening new markets, boosting connectivity, promoting new Greek destinations and attracting new tourism investments. The result is a major improvement of Greece’s image around the world.”