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Greece Offers Free Holiday to Tourists Affected by Rhodes Fires

Aerial view of Elli Beach and Akti Miaouli Beach, Rhodes, Greece. Credit: dronepicr,  CC BY 2.0.

Greece will offer a week of free holidays on Rhodes to tourists who were forced to cut their stay on the island short due to devastating wildfires, Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis announced on Wednesday.

Thousands of tourists were evacuated from local resorts as a devasting wildfire brought chaos to the Greek island last month.

“The Greek government, in cooperation with the local authorities, will offer a week’s free holiday in Rhodes next spring or autumn” for all those who missed it due to the fires, the Prime Minister noted, speaking on the British ITV channel.

Mitsotakis noted that “large fires have always occurred in the Mediterranean,” but “what has changed in recent years due to climate change is their scale.”

“We had a devastating fire on Rhodes, but today the island is back to normal and there is no active front.”

The Greek PM stated that, during the fire, there were no loss of human life nor reports of injuries. “We managed to evacuate 20,000 people with great safety,” he maintained.

Greece’s Rhodes ready to welcome tourists for a free holiday

In reply to a question whether Greece is ready to welcome British tourists, Mitsotakis replied: “Of course, there is no risk. We have always had fires – it is not just a Greek problem, but something that concerns the whole Mediterranean.

“What I can tell you and what was also seen on Rhodes is that we are much better prepared for such events. For the last 3 years, the emergency number ‘112’ has been operating in Greece – something that does not exist in the United Kingdom.”

The Greek Ministry of Tourism and the Greek National Tourism Organization (GNTO) are running international promotions of tourism on Rhodes following the reopening of hotels affected by a devastating fire on the popular island.

The promotions include the following:

  1. Trips for journalists and opinion makers to Rhodes within August from key markets including Great Britain, Germany, France, Poland, the Low Countries (Benelux) and Italy, aiming for testimonials that the destination is safe and attractive to tourists.

2. Restart of joint advertising campaigns with large tour operators and airline companies.

3. Boosting of advertising campaigns and of joint ad campaigns already running in 18   countries abroad, including for off-season travel to Greece.

4. Continuing exchange of information among GNTO and its branches abroad, the North Aegean Region, local agencies and private businesses to promote the image of the island abroad through on the media.

5. Long-term planning for the island of Rhodes to reverse a negative climate and to promote a sustainability model that could be applied elsewhere in the Mediterranean as well.

Related: Fires on Rhodes, Greece Burned 13,500 Hectares of Forest

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