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‘There is the sun and sea, but that does not feed us’: Pandemic hits tourism income on Greece’s Kos

Valentini Troumouzi walks by the empty hotel pool where she used to serve tourists on the Greek island of Kos.
Valentini Troumouzi walks by the empty hotel pool where she used to serve tourists on the Greek island of Kos. © FRANCE 24 screen grab
Text by: Nathalie SAVARICAS | Alexia KEFALAS
1 min

It’s an unusually calm summer on the Greek island of Kos. The Covid-19 pandemic has led to fewer flight connections and social distancing, which in turn means many hotels are shut, a calamity for workers who depend on seasonal income.

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Valentini Troumouzi has suddenly found herself unemployed. The hotel where she worked has closed, its planned renovations to a large outdoor pool left unfinished. Troumouzi, 46, hasn’t been able to find a replacement job, and the €534 per month the Greek government has provided for unemployed seasonal workers isn’t enough.

“At the beginning of the month, we wonder if we will have enough to eat,” she told FRANCE 24.

Past summers on the Greek island of Kos featured streets overflowing with tourists from all over the world, cruise ships in the port and yachts docked in the marina. But today, silence reigns and everyone is worried about the future – and demand at a church-run soup kitchen is up.

Click on the player above to watch the full FRANCE 24 report.

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