Greece Cruise Tourism Recovers with Increased Arrivals and Revenue in 2019
Greece’s cruise tourism industry generated more revenue in 2019 thanks to increased passenger and ship arrivals, according to nine-month data released recently by the Bank of Greece.
More specifically, based on the central bank’s Border and Cruise surveys with data collected at 16 Greek ports covering 83.8 percent of all cruise ship arrivals, Greece recorded 2,972 cruise ship arrivals in the January-September 2019 period against 2,562 in the same period in 2018, and welcomed 4 million cruise passengers compared to 3.78 million in 2018.
In the given period, cruise passengers generated 426 million euros marking a 10.9 percent rise year-on-year.
The leading port in terms of revenues was Piraeus accounting for 44.8 percent of the total, followed by the ports of Corfu and Mykonos with 14.2 percent and 9.4 percent, respectively.
Seven Greek ports accounted for 88.8 percent of total cruise-related receipts and 81.2 percent of total passenger visits.
The number of overnight stays (not onboard) also increased in the 2019 nine-month period by 15.2 percent to 4,308 thousand.
It should be noted that 89.7 percent of all cruise passengers were transit visitors, highlighting the need to establish homeports from where passengers begin their cruises driving up at the same time revenues. In this direction, cruise company MSC announced that one of its liners would set off from Greece in 2021.
Demonstrating the importance of the industry, Greece’s National Coordination Committee for Cruising Affairs resumed responsibilities in 2019, setting the agenda for the year ahead.
“With over 500 million euros in direct revenue for 2019, the prospects for 2020 are better with homeporting, which has the highest revenue, and we expect 297 departures from Piraeus, 51 from Corfu, and 14 from Heraklion, Crete,” said Tourism Minister Harry Theoharis earlier this year.