GNTO: Greece Is Among Top Three European Destinations

Beyond "sun and sea," the Greek National Tourism Organization aims to promote new forms of experience tourism, including gastronomy and outdoor activities.

“Optimistic messages” from abroad were reported by the general secretary of Greek National Tourism Organization (GNTO), Dimitris Fragkakis, who noted that Greece is one of the first three Europeans countries most in demand for vacation travel in the summer.

In an interview that aired on the Hellenic Parliament TV channel, Fragkakis referred to the creation of a comprehensive strategic plan for the promotion of Greek tourism over the next three years, noting that negotiations with foreign airlines and tour operators regarding advertising agreements to promote Greece have been underway for months, in collaboration with major tourism industry players.

“We have a budget that can exceed €9 million for advertising this year and all the messages we receive at the international level make us optimistic, as it seems that there is a high demand for our country,” Fragkakis said. “Greece is in the top three European countries in demand for summer vacations. As the vaccination rollout progresses, the market will respond even more,” he continued, expressing his belief that Greek tourism can play a leading role on the world tourism stage this year as well.

As Fragkakis explained, the existing model of Greek tourism, which was based mainly on the “Sun and Sea” concept, remains central, but it is being augmented by new forms of experience tourism. Priorities this year for the GNTO are the promotion of Greek gastronomy, maritime tourism, outdoor activities, and wellness tourism.

Fragkakis pointed out that the goal remains the further strengthening of Greece’s tourist product at the international level, as well as the extension of the tourist season in cooperation with the local communities involved.

The secretary general also referred to last year’s unprecedented conditions and to the great damage caused to international tourism by the pandemic, with worldwide 2020 revenue losses of 86 percent and losses of about 80 percent for Greece. He noted, however, that the 20 percent of 2019’s revenues the industry managed to salvage amounted to revenues of €4.2 billion for the country.

“The post-pandemic era will be very different,” Fragkakis said.” The way that one travels will change, the way one chooses a destination will change, and we are preparing for these new conditions.”

This article was first published in Greek on

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