Figures released on May 25 show that revenue from tourism declined a further 15.1 percent in the first quarter of 2012. The economic crisis is acting as a particular deterrent to tourists who traditionally visit Greece from Germany, Britain and Russia.
According to Greek Reporter the Bank of Greece cited figures showing a decline of 11.7 percent in the number of visitors to Greece in the first quarter of the year. Visitors are deterred by the prospect of a repeat of last year's strikes and growing anxiety if Greece will remain in the eurozone. The political uncertainty that overshadows Greece is scaring off tourists.
German visitors to Greece have been advised to carry extra cash in euros, Athens News reported. Prospective tourists worried about a Greek return to the drachma and how such a move would affect them if vacationing in Greece, are being advised to "take more cash in euros with them in case the supply of drachma was not yet fully guaranteed throughout Greece" a spokesman for German tour operator TUI said.
The situation is exacerbated by a warning earlier this week from a Barclays economist who warned a sudden Greek exit from the euro could leave tourists facing food and fuel shortages.
Athens News further reported that the average tourist is spending 3.8 percent less than last year whilst on their Greek vacation, with visitors spending an average €405 per trip.
Tour operator TUI is encouraging travel to Greece, saying "There is no reason not to go to Greece. They are waiting with open arms for German tourists."