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Foreign Visitors Spent €10.4 Bln in Greece in January – August 2015

14575Foreign tourists spent at least 10.4 billion euros in Greece in the first eight months of the year, with almost a third of that coming in August.

According to Bank of Greece figures released on Thursday, there was a 7.1 percent increase in receipts compared to the first eight months of 2014. More specifically, British tourists spent 1.48 billion euros, 33.5 percent more than in the January-August 2014 period. The same percentage of growth was recorded by U.S. visitors, who spent a total of 618.8 million euros.

German holidaymakers parted with 10.2 percent more, to reach 1.43 billion euros, while the French raised their spending 4 percent to 898.3 million euros. Only Russians showed a decline in spending and arrivals, falling 68 percent to 281.9 million euros.

Arrivals in the January-August 2015 period increased by 10.6 percent to almost 17 million people. There was a 35.7 percent yearly rise in U.S. visitors, a 24.9 percent rise in visits from the U.K., 22.5 percent from Germany and 4.4 percent from France, while 61.6 percent fewer Russian holidaymakers came to Greece.

According to estimates by the Tourism Ministry and the Association of Hellenic Tourism Enterprises (SETE), tourists this year will reach 26 million and travel takings will come to around 14.5 billion euros. It will be a record-breaking year, as was 2014 when 25 million tourists visited Greece.

The travel balance in the January-August period showed a surplus of 9.1 billion euros, or 8.5 percent more than 2014. This is mainly due to the 690 million euros more in travel revenues and the decline in the travel expenditure of Greeks abroad by 20 million euros.

Average spending per trip contracted by 3 percent to 600 euros, although August visitors spent 3 percent more than last year.

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