Greece’s prime minister is offering a “do-over” for travelers whose trips to the holiday island of Rhodes were canceled or truncated due to the country’s wildfires this summer.
Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis appeared on the UK chat show Good Morning Britain on August 2 to discuss the situation in Rhodes. Many of the affected travelers were from the UK.
“For all those whose holiday was cut short as a result of wildfires, the Greek government in cooperation with local authorities will offer one week of free holidays on Rhodes, next spring or next fall, so that we make sure they come back to the island,” he said.
Mitsotakis did not explain how the plan would work and no additional details were offered.
More than 19,000 tourists were evacuated from Rhodes during severe wildfires and heat waves in July.
The weather-related issues affected other regions in Greece as well. The island of Corfu also evacuated travelers, and one of the country’s most iconic attractions, the Acropolis, closed to visitors as temperatures in Athens soared to 44 degrees Celsius (111.2 Fahrenheit).
The Greek Tourism Ministry, the country’s official tourism body, was similarly bullish in a press release this week.
“Rhodes is back!” the release read. “We are pleased to announce that the operational state of emergency has expired on the island of Rhodes. Life is now returning to normal for the entire island of Rhodes, including the few areas that were affected.”
Greece relies heavily on the tourism industry, with 18.5% of the national GDP coming from travel, according to the World Travel & Tourism Council.