On 24/05/2020, Law 4688/2020, “Special forms of tourism, provisions for tourism development and other provisions” was published in the Official Gazette .
The new law seeks to introduce new regulations aimed at the development of diving tourism in Greece, establishes the Glamping Sign with the aim of diversifying the tourism product and modernizes the institutional framework to meet the needs of the market.
Diving tourism, as a key pillar of the international tourism industry and an industry with multiple benefits for a country’s economy, can help strengthen island and coastal areas, extend the tourist season and create new jobs. Recreational diving is very popular in recent years and is aimed at tourists who travel specifically to dive each time looking for attractive diving destinations either as part of their vacation or as a special experience.
The new law introduces to the Greek tourist legislation the concept of luxury camping, (glamping) something that has already started in Greece at least since 2012.
Glamping, a global trend in tourism, refers to the experience of luxury accommodation in nature, in outdoor tourist accommodation in unplanned areas and includes different types of accommodation in structures gently harmonized with the natural environment, combining high aesthetics and upgraded services.
A five-year Glamping certification signal is established, which is granted by the Ministry of Tourism through a procedure defined in this law. The Glamping brand fulfills the goals of diversifying the Greek tourist product, attracting visitors of higher income level who have as a criterion for choosing tourist destinations the contact with nature.
Lastly, in an attempt to address the very serious issue of civil liability in relations to COVID-19, the Greek government is restricting the liability of tourism businesses by introducing special regulations for the burden of proof. Specifically, Article 60 of the law concerns the health protocols of tourism companies stipulates that “Civil liability of tourism companies, in respect of any person directly or indirectly related to the coronavirus COVID-19, does not arise in the event that tourism companies comply with the terms of the special health protocols contained herein. The injured party bears the burden of proving the damage suffered and the causal link between the inappropriate application of the terms of the special health protocols and the injury”.
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