Fed up with austerity measures and the way their country has been represented in worldwide media, 200 Greek citizens pooled enough money to buy advertising space in London’s most popular locations.
Through an initiative called Up Greek Tourism, individual Greek nationals raised the £12,000 need to fund the billboards, which feature photos of the fundraisers themselves and the catchline “We are off to Greece” over an animated boat sailing into the blue sea.
The volunteer-run organization has placed similarly funded advertisements in New York City and Washington D.C. in hopes that the world sees Greece as a holiday hot spot yet again.
And seeing how tourism accounts for 16 per cent of Greece’s GDP, these citizens are smart to take matters into their own hands. Advertising works, and the story behind the billboards is even more of a reason to get people talking about and travelling to the culturally rich and picturesquely breathtaking nation.
Political unrest in Greece may have scared off tourists, but these people’s efforts remind us that individual Greek citizens are ready to welcome us with open arms.