More than 100 promotional and marketing activities, for the Tourism of Thessaloniki, are included in the Thessaloniki Tourism Organisation’s (TTO) report so far for 2019, the data of which will be presented at the upcoming Board meeting.
During the past year, TTO succeeded in the empowerment of Thessaloniki’s presence as a tourism destination in the Balkans and in the traditional markets of UK, Israel and Germany.
The “digital bet”
TTO wins the bet of Thessaloniki’s digital tourism with the completion of the first part of a big research on city’s presence in the social media.
TTO is the only body that has undertaken and, systematically, invests in the city’s online promotion, gathering the data of its big research, rich in qualitative characteristics, which will be used for the city’s digital promotion until the end of 2019.
Destination brand awareness
The research started in December 2018, which has been aiming to the city and the TTO’s brand awareness on social media (Facebook 25.500 followers, Instagram 15.500 Followers, continuous posts, campaigns, promotion of the city’s event). TTO added on its social media, the platforms of TripAdvisor and LinkedIn.
Thessaloniki Tourism Organisation places Thessaloniki in the Tourist World Map
- In the framework of the partnership between TTO and Fraport Greece, Wizz Air, having as a goal to support its two flights to Thessaloniki (from London and from Kiev), has undertaken and is presenting on its official Facebook page, Thessaloniki as an ideal city-break destination for its gastronomy, its UNESCO monuments and for leisure.
- Thessaloniki’s tourist attractions are being displayed in all languages of Wizz Air’s website, while in the English and the Ukrainian version there is a link to the city’s official destination portal, thessaloniki.travel .
- Thessaloniki will be presented to more than 200.000 passengers in three issues of the Transavia airlines in-flight magazine (from November 2019 to April 2020).
- TTO presented Thessaloniki in three International Fairs (Vakantiebeurs, ITB Berlin 2019, Greek Travel Show) as well as, in the workshop “Luxury Greece” organized by the tourism agency ViaggioXte, in collaboration with the Viaggi Dell’ Elefante Tour Operator, with the presence of representatives of luxury tourism agencies of Lombardy/Emilia-Romagna in Italy.
- One of the innovative actions of TTO is the direct presentation of the city’s touristic product at the Collette annual meeting (2019 Global Sales Meeting), the oldest and biggest Tour Operator of the USA, with the participation of 120 Collette Sales Managers.
- TTO participated in London at the National Geographic Traveller Food Festival, with the Masterclass “Thessaloniki of the tastes”, which exceeded all expectations of the organizers and it became a party of the tastes of Thessaloniki and the Greek Gastronomy.
- Within 2019, Thessaloniki via the -first- participation of TTO on Tourism Awards, won two GOLD AWARDS, for the categories of (a) Digital Tourism and (b) Destinations – Tourist Attractions, as well as, one SILVER AWARD for the campaign “Salonica Front WWI”.
- In the beginning of 2019, TTO acquired Managerial Competence.
- TTO has succeeded in creating strategic co-operations with: Fraport Greece, the Macedonia-Thrace Travel Agents Association (MTTAA), the National Federation of Tourism and Shipping Enterprises, the Federation of Entrepreneurs of the Regional Unity of Thessaloniki and the Alexander Technological Educational Institute of Thessaloniki (ATEIT)
- In collaboration with the Department of Tourism Management of the ATEIT, TTO organized two workshops on tourism within the Money Show and Thessaloniki Design Week.
- Thessaloniki appears on the screens of the ThessMall, where important points of the city and events that take place in the city are being shown.
- The 5 cruises that have arrived, so far, have been welcomed by executives of the Thessaloniki Tourism Organization in collaboration with the Thessaloniki Port Authority S.A. Additionally, the executives distributed informative material, travel guides and city maps, while they provided information about shopping areas, sights and attractions.
- TTO invited the German ZDF and the Bulgarian BNT to Thessaloniki. The city was presented in the morning TV programme “Volle Kanne” of the German National TV channel ZDF. TTO offered to the TV crew a city tour and a food tour in Thessaloniki. Furthermore, Thessaloniki was presented at the weekly programme “#Europe” of the Bulgarian TV channel BNT.
- TTO, presents Thessaloniki’s tourism advantages in the monthly Newsletter of the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO).
During the first eight months of 2019 (January to August), TTO organized, participated, supported and collaborated with other bodies of the city for the implementation of:
- 22 Fam Trips and Press Trips (in collaboration with the Greek National Tourism Organization (GNTO) of Israel, GNTO Benelux, GNTO Poland, Czech & Slovakia, GNTO Cyprus, GNTO Germany, etc.),
- 28 scientific conferences and meetings of young people, students and pupils,
- 7 Festivals (i.e. Yedi Kule Conquest, etc.),
- sports events (14th International Marathon Alexander the Great, 8th International Half Marathon, 2nd Olympic Day Run),
- the performance “Happy Chinese New Year 2019”, in the context of the Chinese New Year celebration.
Thessaloniki’s arrivals in numbers
The increase in arrivals at the Macedonia Airport, according to the latest data from Fraport-Greece (International Arrivals + 10.6%), confirms the upward trend of Thessaloniki’s tourism, since, in comparison to 2018, more than 248,000 people visited the city by the end of July.
According to the data presented by the Thessaloniki Hotels Association, overnight stays in the hotels – members of the city, had fallen by -1.5%, but this is not reflected in the museum and archaeological sites’ traffic data which showed an increased quality of the tourist interest (i.e. Heptapyrgion had 85,000 more visitors in 2019 than in 2018).