The development of the summer traffic for the period May - August 2013 confirmed the remarkable upward trend of the foreign residents’ traffic, that reached 1.7 million passenegrs, surpassing prior year’s levels by 6.5%, and demonstrating that the city of Athens is gradually regaining its attractivenessas a tourist destination. This trend is alsoreinforced by the 11.6% growth of destination passengers that visited Athens during the May-August period.
The overall passenger traffic at Athens International Airport during this period amounted to 5.3 million, at a marginal -1.3% below the 2012 levels, with this decline mainly driven by the low travelling demand by the Greek residents (-12,4%,), who are highly affected by the dire economic situation of the country.
It is worth noting that from the total amount of foreigners that travelled to Athens during the summer period, leisure traffic experienced a high increase of 7.1%, with a double-digit increase of 12% during May and June.
The most impressive growth related to tourists originating from the United Arab Emirates (+69%), as well as from non-EU countries (+22%), mostly driven by Switzerland (+41%) and Turkey (+27%). Morover, the Russian and Ukrainian markets continue to demonstrate an increasing trend. On the other hand, tourists from EU countries presented a marginal drop of -2%, while Belgium, the Netherlands and Sweden demonstrated a double-digit growth.
Foreign residents originating from long-haul destinations showed a significant recovery trend, especially those originating from Australia (19%), Canada (45%) and USA (9%).
The positive performance is also reflected in the remarkably high international load factors achieved by airlines during the period May - August 2013 at the average level of 83%.