(Ionian Islands, Greece) – Early figures about the numbers for the 2016 tourist season in the Ionian Islands in Greece is showing in increase in tourist traffic. The Ionian Islands, also known as the Eptanese, is located off the Western Coast in Greece and includes several popular islands that tourists enjoy visiting such as Kefalonia, Corfu, and Zakynthos. Part of the reason for the increase is that the amount of tourists from Turkey has increased.
In three of the top islands, such as Aktion, Corfu, and Kefalonia, the numbers have increased. Aktion has shown a 13.5% increase, Corfu has shown a 11.5% increase, and Kefalonia has shown a 9.5% increase, and Zakynthos has shown a 5.3% increase. Many people owe this general increase to the fact that Greece has a good track record of safety when it comes to tourism. There is also an increase in traffic from places such as China and Korea.
Spiros Galiatsatos said in a press conference last week that, “All the data suggests that we will have a positive season. This creates an obligation for local authorities, businesses and professionals to be even more alert so that our guests depart with the finest experience possible.” He said that these numbers are within projections that were set for the first half of the year.
Greece has been in a recession since before the first bailout, which took place in 2010. Currently, Greece has been approved for the third bailout since that time and they received the first payment from this bailout about a month ago. The funds from this bailout are needed to pay off loan balances to the European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund. Greece relies on tourism because it makes up about 18.5% of the country’s total GDP and is one of its largest industries. Increased numbers in tourism are thought to help the economy.