The number of travelers outside the 26-country Schengen Area visiting Greece has tripled in 2014 compared to 2010, according to the latest figures released by the Greek Tourism Confederation (SETE) in its monthly bulletin for May.
SETE Intelligence monthly statistics reveal that Greece is reporting the highest growth rate among rival countries (Spain, Italy, France and Portugal) in tourist arrivals from non-Schengen countries (Russia, Ukraine, China, Lebanon, Turkey, Qatar, UAE, India), as demonstrated by the number of visas issued in the period 2010-2014.
Visas issued by the United Arab Emirates (UAE) for travel to Greece doubled to 7,084 in 2010-2014, second highest growth rate after Italy.
Visas to Greece issued in India have grown sixfold since 2010, reaching 17,028 in 2013 and 2014.
Qatar issued 1,416 visas to Greece in the same period, more than double those issued in 2010 and outnumbering those issued in Spain, Italy, France and Portugal.
Visas issued in China in 2014 for travel to Greece came to 64,221, up sixfold between 2010 and 2014.
A total of 12,338 visas were issued in Lebanon in 2014 to Greece, almost twice as many as in 2010.
In Ukraine, Greece is ahead of rival countries with both the highest number of visas issued and the largest growth rate for 2014 with 143,789 visas issued.
The number of visas issued in Russia for travel to Greece dropped in 2014 to 850,187 compared to 1,028,258 in 2013.
Visas from Turkey to Greece tripled in 2010-2014, reaching 144,603, marginally less than the number of visas to Italy.