At a recent meeting of the Rhodes Hoteliers Association, it was revealed that Rhodes is all set to experience a rise in tourist arrivals this year. Based on the provisional data collected, of the bookings on the island, it was also revealed that last year saw a rise of 10% in tourist arrivals, as compared to 2005, a trend which is set to continue into this year as well.
Also discussed at the meeting were the outstanding issues that the hotel sector on the island was facing, as well as the future growth prospects pertaining to the Rhodes tourism sector. One of major problems identified was related to town planning issues. Emphasizing on the increase in booking for Rhodes hotels, especially those that employ all-inclusive booking systems, the meeting also focused on how already the occupancy rates for most hotels reaches 100% for the months of July and August. The occupancy rates for the rest of the months are also quite satisfactory, which though unusual, indicated a powerful and positive trend. Bookings from the German as well as Austrian markets were singled out as showing significant increase, and some other markets recording an increase were Netherlands, Italy and Scandinavian countries. Even non traditional markets such as Hungary, Slovakia, Russia, Slovenia and the Czech Republic showed deviation to the positive side.
But clearly the most significant player in the tourist market sectors was Great Britain, which is all set to post a record number in the tourist arrivals to Rhodes. The major contributing factor for this is the start of four direct flights to Rhodes from London, a feat achieved by GB Airways, a subsidiary of British airways. Starting from March 28th, there will be four flights per week from London Gatwick to Rhodes, which is vast improvement from the initial two flights in a week, last year.
The meeting concluded with a discussion on the future propagandas such as an initiative to attract tourists from Sweden, which is about to be launched, as well as the participation of the island in numerous other promotional activities and international tourism exhibitions.