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The Hottest Trend: Getting Married in Greece

26 July 2014 / 17:07:42  GRReporter
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Thousands of couples from China, India, Russia, Great Britain and the USA come to Greece to get married. This year, they flooded Santorini, Crete and Rhodes exchanging their wedding vows under the unique lights of the islands.
Imagine a wedding by the sea, the endless blue skies and rocky scenery of the Cyclades in the background. Or pine woods reaching to the beach to create a unique blue and green stage. Such a wedding is not only dreamt of by the Greeks but also by couples from all over the world. This is why a new and quite profitable tourism trend is blooming, turning Greece into a top wedding destination.

www.newsit.gr
A group wedding of Chinese couples on Crete is merely one example of this type of tourism. Unofficial estimates (these weddings are not registered) attest its development…
The Kathimerini newspaper points out that last year, on Santorini alone, 1,100 foreign couples got married.
Who chooses Santorini for their wedding?

A Russian couple in Santorini, www.santorini-weddings.info
The Chinese might top the list, but it seems that Santorini is turning into a global wedding destination since it was chosen by couples from Great Britain, USA, Russia, and various Asian countries to exchange their wedding vows there.
Indians who choose this beautiful Greek island for their wedding are those who spend the most as they hold the most expensive ceremonies.
It is no mere coincidence that Santorini was voted the second most luxurious wedding destination by the British website ''101 honeymoons''. Paris is at the helm and Capri comes third.

The hottest wedding destinations in Greece
The widely advertised island of Santorini is not the only destination couples choose. According to Kathimerini newspaper, more and more foreigners choose slightly less predictable Greek destinations, such as Monemvasia, Skiathos, Symi, Crete, Paros, Kos, Mykonos, and Athens.
Group weddings
An upward trend is noticeable in group marriages of couples from abroad from which the benefit is twofold: apart from the revenue from the wedding, they also advertise Greece abroad. The typical example mentioned above was the wedding of 16 couples from China who got married in Chania. A similar ceremony was held in Paros, but also in Potidaia in Halkidiki, where 11 Russian and Latvian couples had their weddings under a ... “My Big Fat Greek Wedding” themed ceremony created by a Thessaloniki tourist group inspired by the American film production for couples who want a special wedding and split the expenses. Meanwhile, Crete is the wedding place for couples from Russia and Ukraine…

Mass wedding in Halkidhiki, www.exedra.gr
As reported in June by haniotika-nea.gr, agencies that have come into contact with private and public local bodies have shown interest in the organization of Russian marriages in Chania. The great increase of interest observed for weddings in Greece was noted by president of Beleon Tours, Leonidas Demetriades who said "packages booked increased by 30% as compared to 2013. In May alone, the company booked 23 weddings on Crete, Rhodes, Santorini and Kos.

The first group Chinese weddings in Greece was in 2006 in Oia, Santorini, but at that time no one could have imagined that this could evolve into a tourist trend. Even today, the beautiful island of the Cyclades remains the most popular destination for travellers from China who choose Greece for their holidays.
A Chinese couple gets married in Chania, www.newsit.gr
"So far, we have received requests to conduct 8-10 Chinese group weddings at Fira, from April until the autumn," said Ioannis Argyros, Deputy Mayor of Thera. "The ceremony is held in the centre of Fira in front of the cathedral with a panoramic view of the Caldera. The Chinese are very fond of Santorini. Since 2008, a steady increase has been noticed in the number of visitors from China," he says.

Greece as a wedding destination at an exhibition in Thailand


Obviously, the market prospects are limitless. This was recently evidenced during the specialised exhibition for weddings “Wedding Fair 2014” in Bangkok, where Greece participated through the advertising project YourWeddinginGreece.com.

A wedding in Paros, www.one-weddings.gr

Tags: Getting Married in Greece Santorini Crete Monemvasia Rhodes Kos Mykonos couples from China India Russia Great Britain and the USA
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