2009 Difficult year for Crete tourism

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Carolina
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2009 Difficult year for Crete tourism

Postby Carolina » Mon Dec 15, 2008 8:30 pm

Many are predicting an extremely difficult year for tourism in Crete in 2009 due to recession, the falling pound and now the picture of political instability across Greece. Comment from the Haniotika Nea today-


'Firstly the adverse economic climate prevailing internationally, and now the anarchy and the pictures shown around the world in recent days of the vandalism in Greece’s biggest cities, will deter foreign tourists.

Indeed, the incidents and the climate that shaped the international media, are probably the ultimate blow for Greek and, especially, for Cretan tourism. The travel advice issued by many foreign countries has created and cultivated a climate of insecurity for those who planned to spend the summer holidays in Crete or in another Greek tourist resort.

According to initial estimations demand for holidays in Crete appear reduced by up to 50% while competing countries such as Turkey and Egypt are showing an upward trend in demand.

The British market is showing a reduction of up to 50%, while the corresponding figures from the German market decline by 30%. As Germans and British are the prime "summer customers", then we may consider how dramatically the situation will affect Cretan tourism , as well as the local labour market and the local economy. If many businesses do not open hundreds of workers will become unemployed, and a large number of companies which "deal" with tourism will be affected.

"Nobody can say with certainty what will happen", commented the "Cretan Review" vice-chairman of the Hoteliers Association of Rethymnon, Manolis Tsakalakis.

For the moment, not even the tour operators in Europe are in a position to know what lies ahead. A better picture is expected to emerge in February, as every year.'

Brian
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Postby Brian » Mon Dec 15, 2008 10:19 pm

Yes Carol things look gloomy for 09. One ray of hope perhaps! crude oil is down to $43.00 pb approx. Most airlines will not repeat the mistake of 07/08 when they held off hedging the price of their fuel requirements, hoping it would retreat once again to what they thought would be normal prices - what a shock - it, at one point, reach $150.00 pb.
Sad thing though, if XL could have held on for a couple of more weeks they would now be back in rude health giving the current price of fuel. Ironically, the price of oil started to drop the week after XL went burst, and has'nt stop falling since.

Nancy
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2009 Difficult Year For Crete Tourism

Postby Nancy » Tue Dec 16, 2008 1:07 pm

The morning chat shows on British television are advocating all inclusive package holidays due to the exchange rates which they are predicting to fall as low as 0.7 euro. :(

latsida

Postby latsida » Tue Dec 16, 2008 2:34 pm

yes Nancy.
many years ago in the early seventies you could only take so much money abroad on holiday,think it was 50 pounds but I am sure someone will remember,so you had to stay in hotels with full board.
remember once running out of money and could not even buy a drink on the plane on the return journey

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Postby Kilkis » Tue Dec 16, 2008 11:12 pm

I've never been there but I've got a sneaky feeling that Turkey is going to seem very attractive to UK tourists. Same climate as Greece. Pretty similar food. Always was cheaper than Greece but now even more so since the Lira has stayed almost flat against sterling while the Euro has been strengthening.

I am not completely convinced that all inclusive actually helps. There are still costs to the tour operator in the destination country. Those costs have to be paid in local currency. When pricing the all inclusive deal in sterling tour operators have to hedge against the possible changes in exchange rate. It gets rid of future surprises but that's about all. To me a major part of a holiday is eating in lots of different places.

Warwick

Carolina
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Postby Carolina » Wed Dec 17, 2008 1:21 am

I can see how all inclusive holidays could become very attractive for many at this time, but what a disaster that would be for local businesses.

The tour operators have worked out their costs for 2009 at a time (August/Sep/October 2008) when oil prices were still high but dropping, and when the pound had started to take a dive. I'm sure most have hedged against the dropping pound and forward bought at least part of their euros for next year. The big tour operators also wield a lot of power over the prices they pay to suppliers (i.e. the hotels, villas) so it's likely they will be getting reasonable deals with their suppliers, and for all inclusive deals too.

However, out of curiosity I've just checked the booking T&C's with a couple of the major tour operators and there are no more 'surcharge guarantees' .. just a clause that should the cost of a holiday go up by more than 10% due to fuel, taxes or currency surcharges then you are entitled to cancel and obtain a refund.

So there could still be late surprises in store regarding a pre booked package holiday cost, inclusive or not.

qlight
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Postby qlight » Wed Dec 17, 2008 8:34 pm

I am not sure that this will be good advice but I plan on having a holiday next year and I should think that the two weeks away in the sun for most families will be the last luxury to go, many people would rather maybe not buy that new car than not have a holiday that they have worked for all year.

I would imagine like me most poeple, once they find their little piece of heaven in crete, will tend to return year after year, I have been going back to the same apartments in Panormos for the last 5 years, the friendliest family run it and they are independant when it comes to booking. Their room rates are not expensive nor is it hard to find a cheap summer flight on one of the budget airlines.

So my advice is to stick with the apartments you know and also keep intouch with the family that runs them, good deals to be had by all and also remember once you are there you will be spending your money with them most of the time.

Nancy
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2009 Difficult Year for crete tourism

Postby Nancy » Fri Dec 19, 2008 8:38 pm

I agree holidays should be the last to go. We allways manage to stay in Elounda at least two / three times a year and have done so for the past 20 years. I think we may try a different area as we found the West of the Island to be a little more cost effective. I guess it would be good to explore the Island as we are considering setting up home there within a year or two. Does Elounda appear more expensive?

Eric the Fruitbat
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Postby Eric the Fruitbat » Fri Feb 06, 2009 3:23 pm

With most of the locals in our pub in the UK they are looking to tighten a notch on their belts. I think that holidays abroad are the last things on their minds. Sorry to report this but it is the truth. :cry: Eric

Brian c
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Postby Brian c » Fri Feb 06, 2009 3:58 pm

Nancy
i have visited ag nic 3 times a year for the last 3 years(and booked again for april :D ) and can confirm that elounda and even ag nic are both considered to be on the slightly expensive side, in comparison to other areas of Crete. ...and that also applies to property prices.
brian c
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Postby Part time Skopi resident » Fri Feb 06, 2009 5:14 pm

And if a certain minister in the UK gets his way, it will be even worse - he's advocating that the number of flights we take be compulsory limited.

IANTIN
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Postby IANTIN » Fri Feb 06, 2009 10:20 pm

Noticed big changes last year (June and October) in Hersonissos.
The main street was extremely quiet with bars and resturants all reporting that trade was down . Strange to sit in a bar at 23:30 and be the only one's in the place. The all inclusive wristbands were very much in evidence and seemed to mainly belong to people from eastern europe.
My friend george ,owner of the Saloon bar was even suggesting that this could be his last year, fame bar closed down and Quarto bar was usually closed by 01:00 ( unheard of !! ). The strong Euro will keep people away from Greece and I can not see much improvement in the near future.
Of course the people who love Greece and in particular Crete will always come back what ever the financial climate. ( been to Turkey - hated it )

Iantin

kim
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Re: 2009 Difficult year for Crete tourism

Postby kim » Wed Feb 18, 2009 8:15 pm

Carolina wrote:Many are predicting an extremely difficult year for tourism in Crete in 2009 due to recession, the falling pound and now the picture of political instability across Greece. Comment from the Haniotika Nea today-


'Firstly the adverse economic climate prevailing internationally, and now the anarchy and the pictures shown around the world in recent days of the vandalism in Greece’s biggest cities, will deter foreign tourists.

Indeed, the incidents and the climate that shaped the international media, are probably the ultimate blow for Greek and, especially, for Cretan tourism. The travel advice issued by many foreign countries has created and cultivated a climate of insecurity for those who planned to spend the summer holidays in Crete or in another Greek tourist resort.

According to initial estimations demand for holidays in Crete appear reduced by up to 50% while competing countries such as Turkey and Egypt are showing an upward trend in demand.

The British market is showing a reduction of up to 50%, while the corresponding figures from the German market decline by 30%. As Germans and British are the prime "summer customers", then we may consider how dramatically the situation will affect Cretan tourism , as well as the local labour market and the local economy. If many businesses do not open hundreds of workers will become unemployed, and a large number of companies which "deal" with tourism will be affected.

"Nobody can say with certainty what will happen", commented the "Cretan Review" vice-chairman of the Hoteliers Association of Rethymnon, Manolis Tsakalakis.

For the moment, not even the tour operators in Europe are in a position to know what lies ahead. A better picture is expected to emerge in February, as every year.'
Crete needs to drop its prices in food, drinks, cost of living and property/land/housebuilding to fall in line with the competition.If not it will lose a lot of visitors and property investers etc.

filippos
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Re: 2009 Difficult year for Crete tourism

Postby filippos » Wed Feb 18, 2009 11:35 pm

kim wrote:Crete needs to drop its prices in food, drinks, cost of living and property/land/housebuilding to fall in line with the competition.If not it will lose a lot of visitors and property investers etc.
Easier said than done. Property prices have already fallen and, IMO, they will continue to do so as ever more developers and builders have problems.

As for food, drinks, etc., what do you expect restaurants and shops to do when wholesale prices are increasing, especially on imported goods and produce? There's not much a taverna owner, for example, can do about exchange rates, either. I suppose they could reduce their prices and go out of business but who will that help.

Producers of olive oil have, this year, been getting a price that's the lowest seen for years. Some have even suggested the olives aren't worth harvesting because the returns are so low. Some Cretans are surviving only because they have a little patch of land on which they grow some/most of their own food.

Jean
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Postby Jean » Thu Feb 19, 2009 1:01 am

Crete needs to drop its prices in food, drinks, cost of living and property/land/housebuilding to fall in line with the competition.

What is the competition?


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