European Tourism issues discussed in Thessaloniki

 Wednesday, November 30, 2022 

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The challenges and prospects of the travel and tourism industry in Europe were discussed at the European Travel Agents’ and Tour Operators’ Associations’ (ECTAA) 125th semi-annual meeting, that took place recently in Thessaloniki.

During the two-day event, which saw representatives of tour operators and travel agencies from 29 European countries come together, sustainable tourism and the labor shortage/skills gap in the tourism industry were the issues in the center of discussions.

Day 1 of the event focused on sustainability-related issues which included a presentation of the newly founded KlimaLink, an initiative that aims to develop and establish a uniform CO2e calculation standard for holiday packages, which is already supported by travel associations in Germany, Austria and Switzerland.

Following the presentation, Head of GNTO’s UK & Ireland branch Eleni Skarveli, showcased the “Sustainable Greece” program,  which is already promoted to the British travel agencies and tour operators as a possible highlight in their future travel packages.

The challenges and prospects of the travel and tourism industry in Europe were discussed at the European Travel Agents’ and Tour Operators’ Associations’ (ECTAA) 125th semi-annual meeting, that took place recently in Thessaloniki.

During the two-day event, which saw representatives of tour operators and travel agencies from 29 European countries come together, sustainable tourism and the labor shortage/skills gap in the tourism industry were the issues in the center of discussions.

Day 1 of the event focused on sustainability-related issues which included a presentation of the newly founded KlimaLink, an initiative that aims to develop and establish a uniform CO2e calculation standard for holiday packages, which is already supported by travel associations in Germany, Austria and Switzerland.

Following the presentation, Head of GNTO’s UK & Ireland branch Eleni Skarveli, showcased the “Sustainable Greece” program,  which is already promoted to the British travel agencies and tour operators as a possible highlight in their future travel packages.

The ECTAA conference in Thessaloniki also marked the first time a representative of Uni-Europa, the continent’s trade union federation, participated in its semi – annual events.

During her speech, Annika Flaten, UNI Europa’s director of Commerce and Tourism, underlined that the main challenges of employment in tourism are still related to working hours and pay levels, among others.

ECTAA’s President Frank Oostdam opened the two day conference while other officials participating in the event included FEDHATTA President Lysandros Tsilidis, HATTA President Nikolaos Kelaiditis, Interior Deputy Minister Stavros Kalafatis and Tourism Minister Vassilis Kikilias, among others.

ECTAA’s autumn meeting in Thessaloniki was supported by the Greek National Tourism Organization (GNTO), the Federation of Hellenic Associations of Tourist & Travel Agencies (FEDHATTA), the Hellenic Association of Travel and Tourist Agencies (HATTA), the Region of Central Macedonia, the Municipality of Thessaloniki and the tourism organizations of Thessaloniki and Halkidiki.

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