Greek tourism revenues could double from a flourishing sea cruise activity in the country if Greek ports would be established as home ports for sea cruise, Yiannis Retsos, president of the Hellenic Hotels Federation told ANA-MPA on Friday.
Retsos said the figures of a significant increase in sea cruise were not telling the whole truth. Tourists arriving to Greek ports are spending only a minimum amount of money to museums and they did not eat at local restaurants since they enjoyed all inclusive packages on board, Retsos said, adding that a transit sea cruise passenger was spending an average 60-65 euros in every port, while a sea cruise passenger boarding a port spends a minimum of 200 euros.
The country’s tourist community estimates that a change of policy and a full abolition of cabotage in sea cruise could explode tourist revenues that could reach 1.5 billion euros annually, from 600 million euros currently. The Piraeus Port Authority said recently that sea cruise passengers arriving at the port of Piraeus in the January-August period totaled 1,611,429, up 28.6 pct, of which transit passengers were 1,309,681 (up 37.5 pct compared with 2010).