The Telegraph: Foreign Airbnb golden visa investors booting Greek tenants

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The Telegraph: Foreign Airbnb golden visa investors booting Greek tenantsGreece provides the visas for investments of more than 250,000 euros ($282,680)

Greece’s selling of Golden Visas, giving wealthy foreign investors residency permits and European Union passports, has seen them buying up apartment blocks on the cheap and then turning them into short-rentals after mass evictions, the British newspaper The Telegraph claimed, according the follwoing report by to thenationalherald.com

Greece provides the visas for investments of more than 250,000 euros ($282,680), including in property and it has seen Chinese as well as other foreigners buying up whole swathes of Athens neighborhoods and booting the residents to make way for the rentals through popular portals such as Airbnb.

There’s also concerns among European Union officials that the schemes aren’t being properly vetted and that criminals wanting to launder money from illicit enterprises are using the visas to get into the EU and hide their cash.

Greek hoteliers have been also trying to stop short-term rentals especially with Greece going through a record run of tourist seasons that last year saw some 33 million visitors, three times the country’s population, and more seeking the short-term rentals that are often cheaper than hotels and offer whole apartments instead of a room.

Airbnb told the paper that the report “is an attempt by a hotel group to protect its profits and smear hosts who spread tourism benefits beyond hotels to local families, business and communities,” and block competition.

The paper said that in the past two years the number of AirBnB properties soared from 9,000 to 129,000 and that, according to unnamed “real estate sources” most of these rentals “come from Golden Visa portfolios.”

Read full report at thenationalherald.com

RELATED TOPICS: GreeceGreek tourism newsTourism in GreeceGreek islandsHotels in GreeceTravel to GreeceGreek destinations Greek travel marketGreek tourism statisticsGreek tourism report

 

 

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