So far, 2.3 million foreign tourists have visited Greece during the current season. According to statistics, the largest group are tourists from Germany (412,000), but the biggest surprise was Polish tourists. As it turns out, the Polish market is more buoyant this year than in 2020. So far, 202,000 have come to Greece. Poles, and for comparison, in the whole of last year, a total of 295,000 came to Greece. tourists from Poland.
As a reminder, we will quote numbers from previous seasons. In 2020, when tourism revenues decreased by 78.2%, a total of 7.4 million tourists came to Greece. In 2019, the last normal season, the number of visits exceeded 34 million.
This year's result, however, indicates that Greeks will find it difficult to achieve the previously assumed goal of regaining 50% of tourist traffic from 2019, which would provide about 10 billion euros. The recent regulations of the Greek government, which decided to re-restore some of the restrictions imposed on the island of Mykonos, will certainly not help in the implementation of this plan. The reintroduction of greater restrictions was related to the fact that there was a 248% increase in the number of new infections there during the week. The imposition of a curfew and the re-introduction of the ban on playing music in taverns is to help slow down the recurring epidemic. Tour operators are concerned that these decisions will result in a wave of cancellations and visitor departures. These restrictions were imposed from 17 to 26 July, after which the epidemiological situation is to be assessed.
Unfortunately, a new large number of cases are not only recorded in Mykonos. If the strong upward trend does not slow down, there are also two prefectures of Crete: Herkalion and Rethymno, at risk of imposing new restrictions. They are among the top five Greek regions with the highest number of new cases of covid-19 in recent days. Businessmen in these regions fear local restrictions or even blockades. The Greek minister of tourism does not exclude such a possibility.