Sun, sea and empty beaches: the ongoing financial crisis in Greece is trickling down to the tourism industry.
Negative media reports along with demonstrations in the capital city of Athens are keeping many tourists away from the country at a time when the national debt is now larger than its economy.
German news outlet derwesten.de has reported that the tourism industry in Greece expects a decline in arrivals by about 30% this year. And with that decline comes dramatic consequences. According to the Association of Greek Tourism Enterprises, approximately 800,000 people are employed directly or indirectly in tourism, making it one of the main pillars of the economy.
I recently returned from a week-long holiday on the island of Mykonos where I experienced nothing but the warmest hospitality. Obviously it’s hard to build a complete picture during a week’s holiday, but for the most part it seemed to be business as usual, and there were certainly no signs of unrest.
In fact, contrary to what people believe, this is a great time to be visiting Greece, with properties across the country now available at a discount. About 20% of hoteliers and tour operators are currently reducing their prices and we’ve found offers for as much as 50% off regular prices.
On my stay, I myself benefited from a Travelzoo offer. I had a fantastic holiday at the 4-star Pietra e Mare and would recommend it to our subscribers.
Click here to see Travelzoo’s best Greece deals.
Do keep in mind that Visa has recently warned that should Greece leave the euro, there may be disruption when using its credit or debit cards.