SCQ83
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Re: Has Greece disappeared as a destination?

Thu Dec 28, 2017 5:54 pm

OA260 wrote:
ahmetdouas wrote:
Fraport taking over airports is amazing news as the public managed GR airports are absolutely awful!

.


Well whilst I generally agree that Fraport is a good thing I would not go as far to call it amazing. I want to see results before I hand out that award! Time will tell.


Fraport's mission is to make as much money as they can. So that means better infrastructure to accommodate more PAX, more routes to bring those fliers and more shops so they can spend their money...
 
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OA260
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Re: Has Greece disappeared as a destination?

Thu Dec 28, 2017 6:06 pm

Jayafe wrote:
anstar wrote:
Greece has so much more to offer than an "airline". People know its history, food, olympics, islands etc So that encourages people to actually visit the country.


Which doesn't mean that a flying ad is useless. Ask TK...


Always makes me laugh when people compare IST to ATH and TK to A3. A3 and ATH are not even in the same league for so many reasons and never would have been. For Turkey it is a huge political motivation as already stated. They are prepared to pump billions into these projects including the new IST airport. Kudos to TK for what they have done though but it was never going to work in ATH.
 
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mercure1
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Re: Has Greece disappeared as a destination?

Thu Dec 28, 2017 6:13 pm

Agreed comparing Greece with Turkey is nonsense.

Turkey is a nation of 80million, Greece barely 11mil. To put that in perspective, Istanbul alone has more people than entire Greece.
 
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Jayafe
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Re: Has Greece disappeared as a destination?

Thu Dec 28, 2017 6:16 pm

Obviously not comparing them, but using it as example (as QR before, KM and others. Most of the legacy national airlines were funded at least partially with that aim). PR are still critical, even to justify subsidies, as empowers country's brand. Also some investments can be less profitable for the company but better for the whole country.
 
NichCage
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Re: Has Greece disappeared as a destination?

Thu Dec 28, 2017 10:57 pm

I would like to visit Greece one day, but it still seems like the country is doing bad. Not even Aegean Airlines has widebodies I think.
 
Cunard
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Re: Has Greece disappeared as a transatlantic destination?

Fri Dec 29, 2017 2:07 am

The fact that Aegean Airlines don't have wide bodies in their fleet isn't a good reflection on the Greek economy, the fact that A3 don't have widebodies in their fleet is because there is no need for them, it's as simple as that!

The economy of Greece has slowly started to improve but other world events have overtaken the press and therefore people like yourself are unaware of it unless you google it and see for yourself.

The whole of Europe have tons of flights to Greece during the height of the summer season and extra capacity has been put in for summer 2018 as Greece is now becoming more popular again after the recent declines due to the failure in the Greek economy and the fact that so much attention by the worlds media showing boatloads of migrants washing up on Greek beaches.
Although migrants are still traveling via Greece to get into Europe the situation has gotten better and is now virtually under control by the authorities.

Obviously your looking at it from a different perspective over in the States but what's stopping you from visiting Greece, bad or good economy the likes of the Acropolis, Pantheum, Olympia are all there for you to visit plus the great food and Greece is generally a cheap country to visit compared to other European countries with coast lines in the Mediterranean Sea.

I think 2018 will be a turnaround of fortunes for Greece.
 
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United787
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Re: Has Greece disappeared as a destination?

Fri Dec 29, 2017 3:00 am

NichCage wrote:
I would like to visit Greece one day, but it still seems like the country is doing bad. Not even Aegean Airlines has widebodies I think.


I think the best time to visit a country is when the economy is doing poorly. The the hotels, the beaches, tourist sites, restaurants are all generally the same as when the economy is in good shape. But they all may be less crowded, the deals better and the locals more appreciative of you being there. I visited Portugal in 2011 and loved it. The financial crisis going on in the country had zero negative effect on my visit there and everyone seemed happy to have us ugly Americans there... or maybe the Portuguese are always that wonderful.

And like the other poster said, widebodies are not an indicator of an airline's success. Aegean's business model is more like a JetBlue, Southwest or Alaska.
 
Cunard
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Re: Has Greece disappeared as a transatlantic destination?

Fri Dec 29, 2017 3:19 am

The Portuguese are always that wonderful I can assure you, they are a very friendly and welcoming nationality having been to Portugal many times myself as well having had Portuguese friends.
 
Freshside3
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Re: Has Greece disappeared as a destination?

Fri Dec 29, 2017 3:42 am

United787 wrote:
I could see ORD-ATH being viable on a 763 on UA seasonally, but not because of VFR (visiting friends and relatives). Although Chicago has a large Greek population, I don't think it is large enough or recent enough to support a flight on it's own. My grandfather came from Greece in 1900 and most Greeks I know are at least 1st or 2nd generation. The population has become fairly scattered and integrated into America.

But I do think that with Greece's rebounding tourism, more Americans are travelling there and ORD has the ability to capture some of that traffic. Plus ORD-ATH is *Alliance hub to *Alliance hub and Aegean's growth has been astounding. I think ATH has the ability to become a *Alliance alternative to IST as a gateway to not only Turkey but the entire Middle East. I hope UA and A3 get tighter...


Actually, there is a VFR "niche" market for Greece. About 40% of the Greek diaspora in Chicago are MAINLANDERS....which is in contrast to the rest of the USA, which have higher percentages of Islanders and Athenians. Yes, people have scattered a bit, from decades, but not even close to the level of the "invisible" Los Angeleno Greeks. The Greek community is a bit more solid in Chicago, compared to most places. There are still a large number of Greek restaurants and Churches(in both cases, hubs for the community) in Chicagoland, which is definitely NOT L.A.....

(1)The only viable flight to the mainland is A3's MUC-KLX. Which is not daily, and has a fairly long layover.
(2) Sparta has been a military base for many years, and no intentions of returning to civil aviation.
(3) Austrian's schedule to Patras is crap. Flight leaves VIE for GPA at 5:30 AM........all the OS flights from the USA arrive at 8:40AM, missing it by three hours.
(4) OA's flights to IOA have a 12-hour-plus gap in ATH.....flights from the USA arrive too late to make the first one. So, there is a bit of a dilemma of either waiting until the next flight, or start on ground transportation.

For all practical purposes, people will have to take some kind of ground transportation, be it by car or train or bus. With that being said, people are willing to pay slightly more, to get a more convenient flight, due to the mainlanders. Chicago is not price-conscious like New York, either, who will take an indirect routing just to save $120.

Plus you have two carriers that have sizable hub operations at ORD. Whoever does get ORD-ATH will stand to gain revenue on other routes......give them the flight they want, and you get the loyalty on the other flying, and take away from their primary competitor. True, regardless if it's AA or UA.

Yes, it would be great if the UA and A3 hubs are connected, and definitely a solid alternative to IST(though a bit smaller). And ATH could be useful for TLV during the Jewish Holidays, since there is no direct service from ORD to TLV....which is happening right after the summer crowd has faded out.

But management at UA has been so ignorant, when it comes to the Greek market, over the years. Not really optimistic, even if ORD-ATH is a "no brainer".
 
Freshside3
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Re: Has Greece disappeared as a destination?

Fri Dec 29, 2017 3:48 am

adamh8297 wrote:
chrisnh wrote:
Has this country turned into the proverbial 'Cant-Get There-From-Here' destination?


Not even close . Look at the amount of flights to ATH and even the islands and Thessaloniki from any European hub and IST.

Problem is, most of the flights are on low-cost carriers that don't have agreements with major transatlantic carriers. RyanAir, SmartWings, EasyJet, etc. are all great for Europeans, but they are practically useless for Americans and Canadians.
 
Cunard
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Re: Has Greece disappeared as a transatlantic destination?

Fri Dec 29, 2017 4:52 am

As a Canadian you could always fly with Westjet to LGW and connect with one of the many EasyJet flights to numerous Greek destinations, Westjet and EasyJet have recently signed a transfer agreement or you could always buy separate tickets and clear customs at LGW and reconnect onto an EasyJet flight bound for Greece.
 
slcdeltarumd11
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Re: Has Greece disappeared as a transatlantic destination?

Fri Dec 29, 2017 5:17 am

Emirates clearly thinks its a little undeserved IE why they got in there. I think they filled the year round spot. There isnt really room now for anyone else.

The main problem is its mostly leisure and there are just too many places to connect. People on vacation dont mind connecting to save a few bucks, so pricing pressure is high. Even the few seasonal flights are all from the northeast NJ, NY, Ontario, Quebec. Summer there is high demand but the demand crashes fast and hard.
 
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aerolimani
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Re: Has Greece disappeared as a destination?

Fri Dec 29, 2017 6:01 am

Freshside3 wrote:
Actually, there is a VFR "niche" market for Greece. About 40% of the Greek diaspora in Chicago are MAINLANDERS....which is in contrast to the rest of the USA, which have higher percentages of Islanders and Athenians. Yes, people have scattered a bit, from decades, but not even close to the level of the "invisible" Los Angeleno Greeks. The Greek community is a bit more solid in Chicago, compared to most places. There are still a large number of Greek restaurants and Churches(in both cases, hubs for the community) in Chicagoland, which is definitely NOT L.A.....

Sorry to nitpick, but I think you're referring to the Peloponnese peninsula. Mainland Greece is usually thought of as everything north of the Gulf of Corinth, though Thrace is also often discussed separately.

As to the Peloponnese, most of it is less than a 3 hour drive from ATH. Mainland Greece is more challenging, in terms of lengthy drives. However, there are a fair number of year-round international flights to SKG, and a good number of summer flights to PVK as the gateway airport for Lefkada Island. KVA also has seasonal international flights, mostly as a gateway to the northeastern Aegean islands.
 
SCQ83
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Re: Has Greece disappeared as a destination?

Fri Dec 29, 2017 6:13 am

Freshside3 wrote:
Problem is, most of the flights are on low-cost carriers that don't have agreements with major transatlantic carriers. RyanAir, SmartWings, EasyJet, etc. are all great for Europeans, but they are practically useless for Americans and Canadians.


My experience in those kind of flights is that there are A LOT of self-connections. Take a Ryanair Madrid-Ibiza or Athens-Santorini in summer, and it is the closest thing to an UN meeting. I think it also helps the fact that not many Americans or Chinese are travelling half the world to just visit one island (and if this is the case, they are probably high-fliers willing to fork more for the shortest one-stop connection), so they will combine it with something else (let's call it Madrid, Barcelona, Athens...) so that "independent" flight is not the end of the world.
 
SCQ83
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Re: Has Greece disappeared as a transatlantic destination?

Fri Dec 29, 2017 6:30 am

Cunard wrote:
The whole of Europe have tons of flights to Greece during the height of the summer season and extra capacity has been put in for summer 2018 as Greece is now becoming more popular again after the recent declines due to the failure in the Greek economy and the fact that so much attention by the worlds media showing boatloads of migrants washing up on Greek beaches.


Part of the Greek (and Croatian) boom is that better established destinations like Spain and Portugal are a) at full capacity and b) have little potential growth as they are very developed (and built).

I disagree with some posters here about Greece being "full". Tourism infrastructure in Greece is overall a joke. New airports, roads and hotels would increase immensely the tourist capacity in the country. Let's not forget Greece has almost 3 times the coast length of Spain!. Just to put it in perspective, if Ibiza was to be in Greece, it would be Greece's second airport (in terms of passengers) by far. And IBZ is almost a "niche" Spanish destination. Or to put it the other way. Mykonos or Santorini (world-famous) have roughly the same number of PAX than Murcia or Almeria (almost tertiary Spanish destinations). That is undoubtedly why the Germans at Fraport took over those airports... there is so much untapped potential because Greeks didn't care to professionalize tourism in their country (in the way it has been done in Spain/Portugal or even Turkey).

For instance, from today's Airlineroute, new Germania destinations. Despite Turkey coming back, Greece is still booming.

https://www.routesonline.com/news/38/ai ... f-27dec17/

Berlin Schoenefeld – Adana eff 27JUN18 1 weekly A319 (Day 3/4)
Berlin Schoenefeld – Antalya eff 01MAY18 3 weekly A319 (Day 246)
Berlin Schoenefeld – Palma Mallorca eff 02MAY18 3 weekly A319 (Day 357)
Berlin Schoenefeld – Rhodes eff 01MAY18 2 weekly A319/737-700 (Day 2)
Berlin Tegel – Adana 01JUL18 – 03SEP18 1 weekly A321 (Day 7/1)
Berlin Tegel – Dalaman eff 04MAY18 1 weekly 737-700 (Day 5)
Berlin Tegel – Gaziantep eff 08JUN18 1 weekly 737-700 (Day 5/6)
Berlin Tegel – Kayseri eff 27JUN18 1 weekly 737 (Day 3)
Berlin Tegel – Samsun eff 10JUN18 1 weekly 737 (Day 7/1; 2nd weekly with A321 on Day 3/4 27JUN18 – 30AUG18)
Bremen – Monastir eff 28JUN18 1 weekly A321 (Day 4)
Dusseldorf – Faro eff 02MAY18 3 weekly A319 (Day 137)
Dusseldorf – Funchal eff 01MAY18 1 weekly A319 (Day 2)
Dusseldorf – Karpathos eff 14JUN18 1 weekly A319 (Day 4)
Dusseldorf – Kutahya eff 07JUN18 1 weekly 737-700 (Day 4)
Dusseldorf – Lanzarote eff 01MAY18 2 weekly A319 (Day 25)
Dusseldorf – Mytilene eff 26JUN18 1 weekly 737-700 (Day 2)
Dusseldorf – Orebro 07JUN18 – 06SEP18 1 weekly 737-700 (Day 4; Except 28JUN18 – 09AUG18)
Dusseldorf – Ponta Delgada eff 04MAY18 1 weekly 737-700 (Day 5)
Dusseldorf – Porto Santo eff 24MAR18 1 weekly 737-700 (Day 6; Scheduled charter)
Dusseldorf – Rhodes eff 01MAY18 2 weekly A319 (Day 26)
Erfurt – Thessaloniki eff 07MAY18 1 weekly 737-700 (Day 1)
Friedrichshafen – Faro eff 03MAY18 1 weekly 737-700 (Day 4)
Friedrichshafen – Kayseri eff 16JUL18 1 weekly A319 (Day 1)
Hamburg – Samos eff 26JUN18 1 weekly A319 (Day 2)
Muenster – Thessaloniki eff 22JUN18 2 weekly A319 (Day 15)
Munich – Karpathos eff 28JUN18 1 weekly A319 (Day 4)
Munich – Kos eff 05MAY18 1 weekly A319 (Day 6)
Munich – Mytilene eff 30JUN18 1 weekly A319 (Day 6)

Nuremberg – Bastia eff 19MAY18 1 weekly A319 (Day 6)
Nuremberg – Bourgas 19JUN18 – 09OCT18 2 weekly A319 (Day 24)
Nuremberg – Monastir eff 20JUN18 1 weekly A319 (Day 3)
Nuremberg – Varna 04JUL18 – 03OCT18 1 weekly A319 (Day 3)
Rostock – Linz 27MAY18 – 16SEP18 1 weekly (Day 7)
 
AntonioMartin
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Re: Has Greece disappeared as a transatlantic destination?

Fri Dec 29, 2017 7:42 am

Well, the days when Greece was a glamour destination with Pan Am, Olympic Airways, Jackie and Onassis are gone, just as those four are also. Competition from other nearby countries for the American tourist, (and to a lesser extent South American, African, Asian and oceanic tourists)
-including relatively new markets such as Russia and Croatia-has meant people have new places to check out, and less money to put aside to visit Greece, That, combined with the Greek economic crisis, the fact the newer version of Olympic does not have planes with the range to fly to the USA, basically makes the perfect storm as far as Greece and transatlantic flights goes.
 
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aerolimani
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Re: Has Greece disappeared as a transatlantic destination?

Fri Dec 29, 2017 8:04 am

SCQ83 wrote:
I disagree with some posters here about Greece being "full". Tourism infrastructure in Greece is overall a joke. New airports, roads and hotels would increase immensely the tourist capacity in the country. Let's not forget Greece has almost 3 times the coast length of Spain!. Just to put it in perspective, if Ibiza was to be in Greece, it would be Greece's second airport (in terms of passengers) by far. And IBZ is almost a "niche" Spanish destination. Or to put it the other way. Mykonos or Santorini (world-famous) have roughly the same number of PAX than Murcia or Almeria (almost tertiary Spanish destinations). That is undoubtedly why the Germans at Fraport took over those airports... there is so much untapped potential because Greeks didn't care to professionalize tourism in their country (in the way it has been done in Spain/Portugal or even Turkey).

The lack of big tourist infrastructure is what keeps a lot of people coming back to Greece, year after year. I think many Greeks also prefer it the way it is. With big infrastructure comes big corporate ownership, much of which is likely foreign. So, instead of all the money going directly into local economies, you end up with locals scrambling for whatever minimum wage jobs they can get, working for resorts.

Besides, I think there's still plenty of room for more development in Greece, in the small-scale style. If the some of the Cyclades islands are getting overcrowded, then people will just start discovering other islands. Or, there's miles and miles of nearly virgin beach in spots like the west coast of the Peloponnese. Just take a look on google maps satellite view. Or, around the Gulf of Corinth, or the Kassandra and Sithonia peninsulas.

A weird factor in Greek tourism is the ferries. For many, there is romance in island-hopping by ferry. I've spoken to many who would prefer to fly to Athens and then take a ferry. They also like the feeling of really escaping; of really journeying somewhere.
 
SCQ83
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Re: Has Greece disappeared as a transatlantic destination?

Fri Dec 29, 2017 8:17 am

aerolimani wrote:
The lack of big tourist infrastructure is what keeps a lot of people coming back to Greece, year after year. I think many Greeks also prefer it the way it is. With big infrastructure comes big corporate ownership, much of which is likely foreign. So, instead of all the money going directly into local economies, you end up with locals scrambling for whatever minimum wage jobs they can get, working for resorts.

Besides, I think there's still plenty of room for more development in Greece, in the small-scale style. If the some of the Cyclades islands are getting overcrowded, then people will just start discovering other islands. Or, there's miles and miles of nearly virgin beach in spots like the west coast of the Peloponnese. Just take a look on google maps satellite view. Or, around the Gulf of Corinth, or the Kassandra and Sithonia peninsulas.

A weird factor in Greek tourism is the ferries. For many, there is romance in island-hopping by ferry. I've spoken to many who would prefer to fly to Athens and then take a ferry. They also like the feeling of really escaping; of really journeying somewhere.


I see your points but Greece is a bankrupt economy in the EU, so it is not like it is Switzerland to decide how they want things their own way... at the end of the day it is a free market so if Greek land owners sell their properties to international companies and infrastructure is improved, there is nothing they can do. IMO Germans taking over touristic Greek airports :) is a good indication of what the future holds for the country. And what you say about the coast is exactly what I mentioned. Being more used to Spain or France (which are way overbuilt and crowded, at least in the Mediterranean), it is always shocking for me to see how "virgin" a lot of the Greek coast is.

Regarding the ferries I disagree. Flying to ATH and taking a (long) ferry from dreadful Piraeus to Santorini has nothing romantic about it and most people I know that did it always mention how tiring it is. Another different story would be landing in an improved & cozy (not the case today) airport in (beautiful) Santorini and then take a (short) ferry to, let's say, Ios, Folegandros or Sikinos and have those islands for "yourself". That could be somehow romantic. And that is why (to reach those virgin islands) improved major island airports with more direct connections to Europe are necessary. And Fraport has seen it.
 
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kitplane01
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Re: Has Greece disappeared as a destination?

Fri Dec 29, 2017 8:50 am

Draken21fx wrote:
Well if played smartly Athens airport could had become a hub similar to Istanbul, but it lacks a company like Turkish as I don't see Aegean expanding with widebodies anytime soon. The space is there.


Can you explain the economics of this? What advantage would an airline in Athens have over an airline in Istanbul?

Istanbul is much bigger. Ataturk airport had 19 million passengers in 2016.
Athens is much smaller, but it's airport had 20 million passengers in 2016.

Turkish median wage is half that of Greece. That seems quite important.
 
a350lover
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Re: Has Greece disappeared as a transatlantic destination?

Fri Dec 29, 2017 9:16 am

Athens has one of the cheapest long haul routes worldwide I would say... Scoot flying SIN-ATH.

IMO, ATH is just too close to super big hubs of connecting pax, namely DXB, DOH, AUH, and lately IST. On top of that, as stated before here, Greece is a remarkable tourist power, but not likely to be a single-EU-destination for any traveler making it there on a long-haul flight, so people connect on EU-short-haul networks to reach Greece, and especially the islands.

On the other hand, Greece has extensive expats communities all around the world, i.e. say Melbourne has de second largest community of Greeks after Athens in the whole world. Not surprisingly Jetstar "flirted" some with a non-stop connection MEL-ATH which eventually never happened.
 
Draken21fx
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Re: Has Greece disappeared as a destination?

Fri Dec 29, 2017 10:26 am

kitplane01 wrote:
Draken21fx wrote:
Well if played smartly Athens airport could had become a hub similar to Istanbul, but it lacks a company like Turkish as I don't see Aegean expanding with widebodies anytime soon. The space is there.


Can you explain the economics of this? What advantage would an airline in Athens have over an airline in Istanbul?

Istanbul is much bigger. Ataturk airport had 19 million passengers in 2016.
Athens is much smaller, but it's airport had 20 million passengers in 2016.

Turkish median wage is half that of Greece. That seems quite important.


You seem to be missing the international passengers. Ataturk has 19mil domestic and 41mil international bringing the grand total to 60mil last year. This year there will be a drop due to the political situation.

Now its too late for a hub. Athens International opened its doors in 2001. Back then there were no competing airports in the region of south east Med for connecting traffic (Ataturk had around 10mil traffic). If Olympic had remained open and expanded its international presence it could have become what Turkish is atm.

In regards to be a one stop shop for tourists I believe Greece has the possibility to do so but due to many reasons (let's not get into them in this topic) this has not materialised. One can easily spent 2 weeks in the Athens, Thessaloniki and various islands and mountains of the country. For me as an example Thessaloniki could have been what Prague, Krakow and some of the smaller Spanish cities are for city breaks but the potential has not yet materialised.

In regards to the proximity of ATH to DXB and the rest of the airports in the region I do disagree. DXB is a good 5h 30mins of flight time away which is plenty. As mentioned above Ataturk killed any hub discussion with its massive expansion in the last 15 years.
 
SCQ83
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Re: Has Greece disappeared as a destination?

Fri Dec 29, 2017 10:42 am

Draken21fx wrote:
For me as an example Thessaloniki could have been what Prague, Krakow and some of the smaller Spanish cities are for city breaks but the potential has not yet materialised.


No offense, but Thessaloniki is not Prague :). But I see your point. IMO OPO in Portugal (which is also the country's 2nd city in a relatively similar country to Greece) could be a proxy of what SKG could become. OPO has +10M PAX, some long-haul routes, a small TAP hub (Aegean could do the same in SKG linking it to more key destinations in EMEA) and far more low-cost connectivity with Europe.

In any case I was in Thessaloniki in Fall last year and I was surprised at how many European city-breakers there were in the city. My Ryanair flight back to Europe had definitely more Euro tourists than "Greek VFRs", despite being low-season and with some many young Greeks working abroad. I hadn't been for years in Thessaloniki and the boom in tourists was more than obvious. You just need to take a look at SKG's figures and new destinations and carriers.

Clearly it is lacking behind Porto or other cities in Spain/Portugal/Italy/Poland in attracting that kind of traffic, but it is improving.
 
Draken21fx
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Re: Has Greece disappeared as a destination?

Fri Dec 29, 2017 11:03 am

SCQ83 wrote:
Draken21fx wrote:
For me as an example Thessaloniki could have been what Prague, Krakow and some of the smaller Spanish cities are for city breaks but the potential has not yet materialised.


No offense, but Thessaloniki is not Prague :). But I see your point. IMO OPO in Portugal (which is also the country's 2nd city in a relatively similar country to Greece) could be a proxy of what SKG could become. OPO has +10M PAX, some long-haul routes, a small TAP hub (Aegean could do the same in SKG linking it to more key destinations in EMEA) and far more low-cost connectivity with Europe.

In any case I was in Thessaloniki in Fall last year and I was surprised at how many European city-breakers there were in the city. My Ryanair flight back to Europe had definitely more Euro tourists than "Greek VFRs", despite being low-season and with some many young Greeks working abroad. I hadn't been for years in Thessaloniki and the boom in tourists was more than obvious. You just need to take a look at SKG's figures and new destinations and carriers.

Clearly it is lacking behind Porto or other cities in Spain/Portugal/Italy/Poland in attracting that kind of traffic, but it is improving.


True give me Thessaloniki anytime of the year vs Prague :P

Agree with you that is improving but is it fast enough? I am amazed by what is happening to Krakow, as an example, year by year, as I happen to travel there quite a lot. Next year they might even overtake SKG in terms of traffic.

SKG grew from 3.6mil to 6mil between 2004 and 2017
KRK grew from 0.8mil to 5.3mil between 2004 and 2017
OPO grew from 2.9mil to ~10mil between 2004 and 2017

My main point in the topic is...yes they do grown in Greece but they need to make sure that they are growing in the right direction and make sure to grow faster cause the competition is catching up and overtaking them ;)
 
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OA940
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Re: Has Greece disappeared as a transatlantic destination?

Fri Dec 29, 2017 11:08 am

Talking about intercontinental/long-haul, Greece has the demand, but airlines just prefer more profitable destinations. Even though Greece is a money machine in the summer, for the rest of the year not so much. But now it's coming back. EK has a daily 777 to EWR and Scoot has a 4x weekly to SIN, both year-round. Add to that the CA flight to PEK that recently went non-stop, and the 6-8 daily flights from the US and Canada in the summer, and you can see it keeps on growing. But in Europe Greece is thriving as a destination and has tons of flights, with more being added.
A350/CSeries = bae
 
Draken21fx
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Re: Has Greece disappeared as a transatlantic destination?

Fri Dec 29, 2017 11:32 am

ahmetdouas wrote:
Lol Relax about MASSIVE! ATH is still considered a small airport, and the island airports some of them are no more than bus stations! Tourism is doing very well in GR but the infrastructure is about to collapse! There is not room for much expansion, especially in the summer. What GR is trying to do now is extend the season so more people come in the winter. Don't forget, the whole country is about 10,500,000 people and the population is shrinking by the day with a negative birth/death rate countrywide.

Fraport taking over airports is amazing news as the public managed GR airports are absolutely awful!

I do not see tourism expanding much more than it has already, it grew fast past 2-3 years mainly due to the collapse of destinations like Turkey and Egypt, so the people coming to Greece already come now because of that. So it should be stable from now on, but more than enough for GR to live on. Besides, Mykonos and Santorini cannot take anymore tourists in peak summer season, there is no more accommodation available!

Long haul from GR will never be all year around except New York, the economy is doing really badly and hardly improving, even with massive tourism. As mentioned before, Greece has a lot of 1 stop options which is more than enough.

Regarding New York with A3, I doubt it as Emirates is doing enough with the route, but either case I was wondering about a case of A3 getting A332's, I think it would work because the London flights are pretty much maxxed out all year long as so many Greeks live in the UK now and desperately needs more capacity.

There are so many flights to London now with FR, U2, BA, A3 and Wizzair coming along and even still many people have to fly 1 stop with LX or LH when the prices are through the roof! London is ATH's flagship route by far.


I couldn't have put all your points better and I agree 1000% with all of them bar the Fraport acquisition of the airports. The situation has been awful in the past. Check Dixon's tweet as an example:
https://twitter.com/hugodixon/status/633888263028252673. The situation will improve massively with Fraport that is for sure.

What I am unsure of is the ability of the Greek government to negotiate investments. I am very afraid that Fraport, as a private company, has been handed the airports without any prerequisites in regards to how much they can charge. They will look to maximise the revenues and they might end up with very high landing fees which will subsequently hurt the local (island mainly) economy. Such increase actually went live the moment the airports came under Fraport ownership.

A similar situation was happening with Athens Airport under the Hochtief management. Some of the terms of the deal were pretty bad for the flying public.
 
Draken21fx
Posts: 132
Joined: Wed Jun 15, 2016 10:38 am

Re: Has Greece disappeared as a transatlantic destination?

Fri Dec 29, 2017 12:09 pm

SCQ83 wrote:
aerolimani wrote:
The lack of big tourist infrastructure is what keeps a lot of people coming back to Greece, year after year. I think many Greeks also prefer it the way it is. With big infrastructure comes big corporate ownership, much of which is likely foreign. So, instead of all the money going directly into local economies, you end up with locals scrambling for whatever minimum wage jobs they can get, working for resorts.

Besides, I think there's still plenty of room for more development in Greece, in the small-scale style. If the some of the Cyclades islands are getting overcrowded, then people will just start discovering other islands. Or, there's miles and miles of nearly virgin beach in spots like the west coast of the Peloponnese. Just take a look on google maps satellite view. Or, around the Gulf of Corinth, or the Kassandra and Sithonia peninsulas.

A weird factor in Greek tourism is the ferries. For many, there is romance in island-hopping by ferry. I've spoken to many who would prefer to fly to Athens and then take a ferry. They also like the feeling of really escaping; of really journeying somewhere.


I see your points but Greece is a bankrupt economy in the EU, so it is not like it is Switzerland to decide how they want things their own way... at the end of the day it is a free market so if Greek land owners sell their properties to international companies and infrastructure is improved, there is nothing they can do. IMO Germans taking over touristic Greek airports :) is a good indication of what the future holds for the country. And what you say about the coast is exactly what I mentioned. Being more used to Spain or France (which are way overbuilt and crowded, at least in the Mediterranean), it is always shocking for me to see how "virgin" a lot of the Greek coast is.

...


Welcome to Costa del Sol or to Mallorca or Barcelona where we had protests this year against tourists.

The free market you mention above is controlled by some rules... These rules help us keep some places intact. Huge building are not allowed on most of the Aegean Islands as the building has to follow certain aesthetics. Same happens in a lot of European cities which try to preserver their history/building tradition. Also unlike Spain in Greece the coast belongs to the public hence it is very difficult to build resorts on the beach (happens of course but not to the extend that happens in Spain).

Bottom line is that some of the Aegean islands mentioned above are packed. The law does not allow massive hotel complexes in places like Oia, Paros etc so everyone will have to comply with that and try to move towards a boutique hotel approach. Only way to increase tourists in some place will be to extend the season.
 
VC10er
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Joined: Tue Feb 20, 2007 6:25 am

Re: Has Greece disappeared as a destination?

Fri Dec 29, 2017 2:08 pm

SurlyBonds wrote:
United787 wrote:
I think ATH has the ability to become a *Alliance alternative to IST as a gateway to not only Turkey but the entire Middle East.


If this were, say, 1995, and the USSR had just collapsed and the ME3 largely not around, I might agree with you. But today, the reality is that TK (itself a Star Alliance member) has the market to medium-sized cities in Eastern Europe, Eurasia, and the Middle East locked up. And what about international connections? UA has one seasonal flight to ATH. Aegean has no long-haul flights, period. Meanwhile, TK has more international destinations worldwide than any other airline. And finally, the airports. Ataturk airport, though overcrowded, has decent facilities, and the new IST should be world class. (Try the Aegean lounge in ATH sometime.) This strategy isn't happening. Aegean is an excellent short-to-medium haul airline and should focus on that, rather than copying TK.


Just wanted to confirm: “TK has more international destinations worldwide than any other airline”

I don’t mean to doubt your statement, but, really TK has more international destinations than any other global airline?

I loved Greece when I went. Although on the 3rd day of a 2 week vacation I got the flu! So I need to go back.

Has anyone ever tried to restart OLYMPIC as was tried with PanAm and VARIG? I miss that livery!
To Most the Sky is The Limit, For me, the Sky is Home.
 
Freshside3
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Re: Has Greece disappeared as a destination?

Fri Dec 29, 2017 2:19 pm

kitplane01 wrote:
Draken21fx wrote:
Well if played smartly Athens airport could had become a hub similar to Istanbul, but it lacks a compani9oky like Turkish as I don't see Aegean expanding with widebodies anytime soon. The space is there.


Can you explain the economics of this? What advantage would an airline in Athens have over an airline in Istanbul?

Istanbul is much bigger. Ataturk airport had 19 million passengers in 2016.
Athens is much smaller, but it's airport had 20 million passengers in 2016.

Turkish median wage is half that of Greece. That seems quite important.


One thing not mention, is that Istanbul has TWO major airports in the metropolitan area(Sabiha Goken being the other).........while ATH only has one.
 
airbazar
Posts: 8552
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Re: Has Greece disappeared as a destination?

Fri Dec 29, 2017 2:26 pm

VC10er wrote:
Just wanted to confirm: “TK has more international destinations worldwide than any other airline”
I don’t mean to doubt your statement, but, really TK has more international destinations than any other global airline?

Hard to believe it but, they probably do. Going by wikipedia they serve 302 destinations of which 50+ are domestic. The next closest would be the combined AF-KLM or Lufthansa each with 200+ international destinations. QR, EK or even BA at around 150-180 destinations each don't even come close to it.
 
Andy33
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Re: Has Greece disappeared as a destination?

Fri Dec 29, 2017 2:40 pm

VC10er wrote:
Has anyone ever tried to restart OLYMPIC as was tried with PanAm and VARIG? I miss that livery!


The Olympic brand is owned by Aegean Airlines, who use it as their brand for domestic flights, and the fleet of turboprops is operated using the Olympic AOC.
So absolutely no possibility of anyone else relaunching it. Outside Greece the brand is fairly toxic, thanks to unreliability, frequent strikes, and elderly fleet in the state-owned era.
 
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United787
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Re: Has Greece disappeared as a transatlantic destination?

Fri Dec 29, 2017 2:58 pm

kitplane01 wrote:
What advantage would an airline in Athens have over an airline in Istanbul?


Being in the EU and everything that comes along with it, mainly a western rule of law. I loved Turkey and Istanbul but I wouldn't go there now, not even in the airport, unless the political situation changes, which I don't see happening for quite some time.
 
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mercure1
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Re: Has Greece disappeared as a destination?

Fri Dec 29, 2017 3:45 pm

Draken21fx wrote:
[Ataturk has 19mil domestic and 41mil international bringing the grand total to 60mil last year. This year there will be a drop due to the political situation.


Au contraire. What political situation causing traffic decline?

Traffic is up strongly in Turkey

For the first 11 months of 2017 SAW and IST each had 5% YoY growth to 58.6 and 28.8mil enplanements. Basically Istanbul overall will end 2017 with 100mil enplanements.
Broader Turkey is doing even better with 10.6% growth YoY in enplanements!
http://www.dhmi.gov.tr/istatistik.aspx

Turkey is forecast to end 2017 with the strongest economic growth of all OECD countries in 2017.
https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles ... rd-quarter


Seems many posters here have quite distorted view of Turkey and whats happening with the aviation sector.


But getting back to Greece, lets move away from comparing the nations, as situations with scale, opportunity, and economics their respective home markets are very different between Turkey and Greece. Each has developed very different market characteristics over the decades.
 
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OA260
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Re: Has Greece disappeared as a destination?

Fri Dec 29, 2017 4:18 pm

VC10er wrote:

Has anyone ever tried to restart OLYMPIC as was tried with PanAm and VARIG? I miss that livery!


Olympic Air is the airline now with a slightly different livery . It operates 99% Domestic and some Balkan routes. I flew ATH-IST a few weeks ago and it was a great flight and product. Had the private sector taken over Olympic in the 90's then we would have a very different situation today. I doubt we would see the longhaul network that was funded by state aid under OA but today Olympic would have been what A3 are now.

Despite some comments above I flew regularly on OA in the 80's/90's up to the shut down and opening of Olympic Air by MIG ( later sold to A3 ). I rarely had bad flights and their fleet was in pretty good condition and I flew the whole fleet. ! Food was great and fares decent. I also flew JFK-ATH on the upper deck in Olympian Executive class in the early 90's and it too was a pretty decent product and great food. In the latter days it was of course plagued by strikes but to say the brand was / is toxic is pure crap.


This is what OA currently offer on a 50 mins flight :


Image
.
Image


A3 have refreshed and saved the brand. Indeed reading comments and hearing from people I know who remember the old OA are happy to see it reborn offering a modern reliable product.
 
SCQ83
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Re: Has Greece disappeared as a destination?

Fri Dec 29, 2017 5:06 pm

Draken21fx wrote:
Agree with you that is improving but is it fast enough? I am amazed by what is happening to Krakow, as an example, year by year, as I happen to travel there quite a lot. Next year they might even overtake SKG in terms of traffic.

SKG grew from 3.6mil to 6mil between 2004 and 2017
KRK grew from 0.8mil to 5.3mil between 2004 and 2017
OPO grew from 2.9mil to ~10mil between 2004 and 2017

My main point in the topic is...yes they do grown in Greece but they need to make sure that they are growing in the right direction and make sure to grow faster cause the competition is catching up and overtaking them ;)


Polish economy has been growing very fast, so there are more business trips and Polish residents have more money to spend and travel more (Greece is the other way around). Krakow is one of the archetypical Eastern European city-breaks and one of the Stag Party capitals of Europe. Google "stag Krakow". On top KRK is the gateway to Auschwitz which attracts people from all over the world.

Draken21fx wrote:
Huge building are not allowed on most of the Aegean Islands as the building has to follow certain aesthetics. Same happens in a lot of European cities which try to preserver their history/building tradition. Also unlike Spain in Greece the coast belongs to the public hence it is very difficult to build resorts on the beach (happens of course but not to the extend that happens in Spain).


Coast in Spain is public. http://www.4everspain.com/en/essential- ... perty-law/ You cannot privatise a beach in Spain like you have in Italy.

Draken21fx wrote:
Bottom line is that some of the Aegean islands mentioned above are packed. The law does not allow massive hotel complexes in places like Oia, Paros etc so everyone will have to comply with that and try to move towards a boutique hotel approach. Only way to increase tourists in some place will be to extend the season.


Building resorts in Oia does not make any sense, but as others have mentioned there are places like Crete or Peloponnesus that could cater to that tourism.
 
Freshside3
Posts: 1494
Joined: Fri Nov 30, 2012 2:11 am

Re: Has Greece disappeared as a destination?

Fri Dec 29, 2017 10:48 pm

SCQ83 wrote:
Freshside3 wrote:
Problem is, most of the flights are on low-cost carriers that don't have agreements with major transatlantic carriers. RyanAir, SmartWings, EasyJet, etc. are all great for Europeans, but they are practically useless for Americans and Canadians.


My experience in those kind of flights is that there are A LOT of self-connections. Take a Ryanair Madrid-Ibiza or Athens-Santorini in summer, and it is the closest thing to an UN meeting. I think it also helps the fact that not many Americans or Chinese are travelling half the world to just visit one island (and if this is the case, they are probably high-fliers willing to fork more for the shortest one-stop connection), so they will combine it with something else (let's call it Madrid, Barcelona, Athens...) so that "independent" flight is not the end of the world.

Except during irregular ops. If(for example) your RyanAir flight is late, and you miss your Delta flight, who pays the change fee penalty? YOU do. Family of four at $200+ change penalty adds up.

If people wish to do self-connections, that is fine. But there is a risk involved. If anything, plan an overnight in ATH, DUS, LGW, BCN or wherever else, to ensure you have no problems. Cheaper to buy a hotel room, and visit a city you would not normally see, than get stuck with an $800 change fee.
 
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kitplane01
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Re: Has Greece disappeared as a transatlantic destination?

Sat Dec 30, 2017 12:03 am

Draken21fx wrote:
ahmetdouas wrote:
Fraport taking over airports is amazing news as the public managed GR airports are absolutely awful!


I couldn't have put all your points better and I agree 1000% with all of them bar the Fraport acquisition of the airports. The situation has been awful in the past. Check Dixon's tweet as an example:
https://twitter.com/hugodixon/status/633888263028252673. The situation will improve massively with Fraport that is for sure.



From what I read private flying has been priced almost out of existence in Greece by Fraport. Not the business jets, but the private piston planes. The fees Fraport charges mean that one almost cannot fly to Greece. The fees are not even profit maximizing ... they basically prohibit such operations even though there is plenty of capacity on the smaller airports to handle such traffic. The fees are way above what is charged even in Germany.

From a personal plane perspective, Fraport has been a disaster for Greek flying.
 
F27500
Posts: 493
Joined: Sun May 07, 2017 12:52 am

Re: Has Greece disappeared as a destination?

Sat Dec 30, 2017 3:50 am

CPHFF wrote:
I'm sure Hellenic Imperial Airways will launch ATH-JFK any day now.............


I hear it's a codeshare with Baltia!

This has money written ALL over it! ;)
 
Pe@rson
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Re: Has Greece disappeared as a transatlantic destination?

Sat Dec 30, 2017 9:14 pm

Greece is expected to have about 30 million tourists in 2017, up from 25 million in 2015 and 27.5m in 2016. In 2017, around 900k from the US are said to have visited.

Greece is an exceptionally big tourist destination, especially for Europeans.

https://www.travelagentcentral.com/dest ... reece-2017

https://www.google.co.uk/amp/amp.dw.com ... a-38763499
"Everyone writing for the Telegraph knows that the way to grab eyeballs is with Ryanair and/or sex."
 
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tomflyBRQ
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Re: Has Greece disappeared as a transatlantic destination?

Sat Dec 30, 2017 10:16 pm

To put things to perspective for our US friends, GDP of Greece is equivalent to that of South Carolina or Kentucky (if they were independent states). I am happy to be corrected but I guess those states also do not have much of direct transatlantic air service. Once government stops subsidizing its flag carrier, it is difficult make purely economic case for transcontinental service in small and relatively poor countries like Greece. With cutbacks in public spending, pensions etc. in recent years, subsidizing flag carrier for prestige reasons is pretty low on Greek priority list, even if it was permitted by EU rules (it is not).

Greece may be nice tourist destination, but this is seasonal and covers many destinations (islands), causing a need for transfer point anyway.
 
BreezyIAH
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Re: Has Greece disappeared as a transatlantic destination?

Sun Dec 31, 2017 3:59 am

If ATH had the facilities and Greece had the economy and right airline, could that airline turn ATH into a Istanbul/Turkish Airlines operation that spanned the globe?
 
OB1504
Posts: 3320
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Re: Has Greece disappeared as a destination?

Sun Dec 31, 2017 7:18 am

jfklganyc wrote:
Tower was the #1 choice, Because Olympic was so bad.


It says a lot about how bad Olympic was that people would prefer Tower Air over them.
 
Lufthansa
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Re: Has Greece disappeared as a transatlantic destination?

Tue Jan 02, 2018 9:49 am

Something I think was missed here on transatlantic flights and that's all the big Euro's go to Mykonos and Santorini direct from the Their hubs. That makes it possible to fly a single stop from somewhere like Austin TX, or Salt Lake City, or Minneapolis direct to those islands.

Second factor a lot of Americans arrive at these places on Cruise ships.
 
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LAX772LR
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Re: Has Greece disappeared as a transatlantic destination?

Tue Jan 02, 2018 9:53 am

Lufthansa wrote:
all the big Euro's go to Mykonos and Santorini direct from the Their hubs.

Not exactly. AF nor KL do.

Sure TransAvia flies there for both, but only seasonally; and doesn't do so in respect to the TATL J/Vs, so they aren't much use for getting US pax there, shy of a double-booking.
I myself, suspect a more prosaic motive... ~Thranduil
 
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ojjunior
Posts: 590
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Re: Has Greece disappeared as a transatlantic destination?

Tue Jan 02, 2018 10:33 am

Well, I recently included Greece as one of the potential holiday destinations in Europe for 2018, among many other options but c'mon, what's wrong with these Greeks? Aren't they the ones who have been through a very serious economic crisis recently? Don't they need money coming in?
Omg the prices, more expensive than Paris or Munich and even London, even with the GBP there. And it is not a little more expensive or almost the same thing, it is much, but much more expensive, tickets, whatever the connection to there, tours, transfers, tickets, hotels, etc. Surprisingly negative all my search results.
I understand that the Country needs to rebound but at the expense of tourists ???
Do the Greeks prefer that those who is going there support those who do not go? Do they have no problem if among 5 just 1 goes there?
I don't know what mathematics is this, but Greece has nothing more than any other European countries to offer to justify these prices.
Greece scratched from the list for good, for the values I found, I rather go to Thailand.
Or am I completely wrong and Greece is so full of tourists that those prices doesn't matter because everything is always packed with people all year round?
 
P1aneMad
Posts: 155
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Re: Has Greece disappeared as a transatlantic destination?

Tue Jan 02, 2018 10:43 am

I believe the transatlantic market from US and Canada to Greece has never been bigger. Apart from the direct flights a whole lot more fly via some European hub airport to either ATH or to the 30-40 other Greek airports.
What is hampering further growth especially during the Summer months is not so much the lack of flights but hotel rooms being difficult to find due to high demand.
 
B777LRF
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Re: Has Greece disappeared as a transatlantic destination?

Tue Jan 02, 2018 11:39 am

ojjunior wrote:
Or am I completely wrong and Greece is so full of tourists that those prices doesn't matter because everything is always packed with people all year round?


You very much are completely wrong - the islands are chocker during the season. As for prices, Greece is still much, much cheaper than Paris or London - though why anybody would compare a metropolis with a small island is a bit lost on me.

Enjoy Thailand if that's to your liking. I tried it once, stayed for 3 days before I had enough of watching fat Germans, Scandinavians and Brits dragging young Thai girls around. Immediately upon my return, I went to the nearest package holiday provider and bought a week on Kos. One of my best holidays ever; filled with booze, partying and female company from a variety of European countries.
From receips and radials over straight pipes to big fans - been there, done that, got the hearing defects to prove
 
ahmetdouas
Posts: 303
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Re: Has Greece disappeared as a transatlantic destination?

Wed Jan 03, 2018 12:24 am

GR is quite reasonable if you know how to deal with the locals and not get ripped off, which I guess you can say about many tourist destinations. In Mykonos and Santorini prices are insane, but thats becuase their packed season is only 2 months (July, August), so they try to take as much as they can these months. ATH is much more reasonable, going out is quite cheap if you know what to do and act like a local.

Greece is very expensive if you are on a local salary of 700 EUR a month = )
 
Freshside3
Posts: 1494
Joined: Fri Nov 30, 2012 2:11 am

Re: Has Greece disappeared as a transatlantic destination?

Wed Jan 03, 2018 2:39 pm

SCQ83 wrote:
aerolimani wrote:
The lack of big tourist infrastructure is what keeps a lot of people coming back to Greece, year after year. I think many Greeks also prefer it the way it is. With big infrastructure comes big corporate ownership, much of which is likely foreign. So, instead of all the money going directly into local economies, you end up with locals scrambling for whatever minimum wage jobs they can get, working for resorts.

Besides, I think there's still plenty of room for more development in Greece, in the small-scale style. If the some of the Cyclades islands are getting overcrowded, then people will just start discovering other islands. Or, there's miles and miles of nearly virgin beach in spots like the west coast of the Peloponnese. Just take a look on google maps satellite view. Or, around the Gulf of Corinth, or the Kassandra and Sithonia peninsulas.

A weird factor in Greek tourism is the ferries. For many, there is romance in island-hopping by ferry. I've spoken to many who would prefer to fly to Athens and then take a ferry. They also like the feeling of really escaping; of really journeying somewhere.


I see your points but Greece is a bankrupt economy in the EU, so it is not like it is Switzerland to decide how they want things their own way... at the end of the day it is a free market so if Greek land owners sell their properties to international companies and infrastructure is improved, there is nothing they can do. IMO Germans taking over touristic Greek airports :) is a good indication of what the future holds for the country. And what you say about the coast is exactly what I mentioned. Being more used to Spain or France (which are way overbuilt and crowded, at least in the Mediterranean), it is always shocking for me to see how "virgin" a lot of the Greek coast is.

Regarding the ferries I disagree. Flying to ATH and taking a (long) ferry from dreadful Piraeus to Santorini has nothing romantic about it and most people I know that did it always mention how tiring it is. Another different story would be landing in an improved & cozy (not the case today) airport in (beautiful) Santorini and then take a (short) ferry to, let's say, Ios, Folegandros or Sikinos and have those islands for "yourself". That could be somehow romantic. And that is why (to reach those virgin islands) improved major island airports with more direct connections to Europe are necessary. And Fraport has seen it.


The shorter ferry runs, like to Aigina, do have a sense of "romance" to them.....but long-haul ferrying to Santorini(or Mykonos, etc. for that matter) is really tedious. Especially knowing when you are traveling on a boat for 8+ hours on a "milk run", when you can get to JTR by plane in 40 minutes. The other thing that is not romantic, happens to be the party crowd. Low budget, so they take the boat, and again, it's tedious and boring....the Santorini ferry happens to be the same run you take to get to Ios, which is a hardcore party island. May not be a good thing, going on a honeymoon, and taking this boat.
 
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ojjunior
Posts: 590
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Re: Has Greece disappeared as a destination?

Wed Jan 03, 2018 2:51 pm

OA260 wrote:
Image


Don't know what is more sad in this pic: the classic 747 rotting away, the small helicopter almost imperceptible by the wall, the empty parking lot, the empty streets, the whole appearance of everything being unused for years or the complete lack of any sign of human life around...
 
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OA260
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Re: Has Greece disappeared as a destination?

Wed Jan 03, 2018 5:07 pm

ojjunior wrote:
OA260 wrote:
Image


Don't know what is more sad in this pic: the classic 747 rotting away, the small helicopter almost imperceptible by the wall, the empty parking lot, the empty streets, the whole appearance of everything being unused for years or the complete lack of any sign of human life around...


Very early morning Winters day. Dont read too much into it . Also there are no empty streets its a road that leads to the hangers.

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