In 2022, against all the ominous forecasts, we managed to upgrade our tourist product and get Greece into the top destinations globally.
Therefore, it was not just a year with excellent performance in terms of revenue and arrivals, but it is also a milestone year for Greek tourism.
With strategic agreements and openings in new markets, we managed to attract high spender travelers, "light up" new destinations and, most importantly, stretch the tourist season. As a proof, record revenue in the April to October period, direct flights from the USA which were extended until the beginning of January and also the cruise activity which lasted until the beginning of 2023.
The lengthening of the tourist season combined with our strategy to promote city break model resulted in arrivals of travelers even in the heart of winter with all that this entails for the tourism development of Athens and Thessaloniki, and the support of the culinary industry and the retail sector, during in a year that was quite challenging due to an inflation wave throughout Europe.
And just the fact that we are comparing the 2022 season of multiple crises with the "cloudless" 2019 season is a proof of the success of the past tourist season but also the fact that this success did not come by default but was the result of strategy, proper planning and hard work.
At the same time, the upgrading of our tourism product made Greece a strong pole of attraction for international giants that invest in our country in large hotel units, tourist ports and theme parks, while the government, by utilising resources from the EU Recovery Fund, the European Structural and Investment Funds and the Public Investment Program, is delivering infrastructure projects that will decisively contribute to the touristic and economic development of the country.
In 2023 we will continue to work on further extending the season with the aim of Greece attracting travelers the whole 12 months of the year. The agreements we have already made with the airlines of the United States of America have yielded more than 56 direct flights.
On the same scope, we highlight our winter destinations with targeted campaigns, proceed with new agreements with major market players, invest in alternative forms of tourism (spa, medical, religious, diving, etc.) while focusing on sustainable tourism development: In the circular economy, in the management of water resources, the protection of biodiversity, in the promotion of tradition and the rich Greek cultural heritage.
Safeguarding the identity of our country -which makes it a unique destination in the world- is our duty for future generations.
We will achieve this through a network of interventions that includes a series of infrastructure projects, interventions as well as strategic partnerships with international organizations.
Having, therefore, at the center of our policy a threefold of sustainability, infrastructure projects and 12-month tourism we continue unabated the effort to amplify the tourism development of the country, while always keeping as our primary goal the strengthening of the national economy and the support of the average Greek family.