Israel-Greece ConferenceSecretary General of the Greek National Tourism Organization: "Israelis are more than just tourists"
Secretary General of the Greek National Tourism Organization: "Israelis are more than just tourists"
According to Dimitris Fragakis, Greece has advantages that make it a potential tourist destination all year round; He added that "sustainability is Greece's national target by 2030"
"Sustainability is without a doubt the biggest challenge of the current decade and Greece's national goal by 2030. The current government is a pioneer in environmental protection and our adaptation to the challenge of sustainability, and this is reflected in the climate law passed in parliament," said Dimitris Fragakis, Secretary General of the Greek National Tourism Organization.
"Sustainability is not just about conserving natural resources or preserving cultural heritage," he added. "Sustainability also has a deep social aspect, especially for our country. In it, sustainable tourism can play an even more important role in strengthening social cohesion."
According to him, the big challenge is the dispersal of the tourism product in terms of time and place and as a result increased revenues in more areas of the country and for more citizens. "Greece has all the relative advantages that make it a potential tourist destination all year round. It means more growth, more exposure to local communities and more jobs for young people. The more tourism focuses on local communities, the greater the benefit for all citizens," he said.
How has the pandemic and global crises changed the way people travel?
"The pandemic has changed everything in Greek tourism, but also in global tourism. The digital media for searching and purchasing vacations has developed greatly, and a large percentage of young travelers are now booking holidays through their mobile phones. The requirements have also changed in relation to the destinations themselves. The issue of safety is very important and Greece has had success during the epidemic. The second thing travelers are looking for today is an experience, i.e. to visit a place where they will get the authentic local experience. And the third thing they really want is to find good infrastructure, both on the private level and on the public level. Good hospitality, a good restaurant, a well-lit street that you can walk on, a clean sidewalk, things that are basically self-evident."
What is the potential of the bilateral ties between the Israeli and Greek tourism industries?
"Israelis are more than just tourists, they are real travelers who are always looking to get to know places and gain new experiences. They like to explore and rarely stay in one place. And that is exactly what a vacation in Greece is: journey, experience, human touch. All Greece is like a secret map of hidden treasures that one must discover. Apart from the popular islands in the Ionian and Aegean Seas, there are also the larger cities - Athens, Thessaloniki, Ioannina, Chania. They are very close to Israel and offer the ideal urban vacation. An excellent combination of entertainment, culture, gastronomy, shopping and comfortable accommodation."