After several very long months, Greece has started lifting lockdown restrictions – and now it wants to help salvage your early-autumn holiday plans. Following the prime minister’s promise that the country was ready to ‘welcome the world’ in May, Greece resumed flights to its major airports from June 15.
As of September 7, travellers allowed into the country include residents and citizens of EU and Schengen-travel-zone member countries, plus the UK and around a dozen other countries around the world including Australia, Japan, Israel and Canada.
There are also new rules for travellers arriving in the country. All visitors must fill out a ‘passenger locator form’ at least 24 hours before arriving. This requires ‘detailed information on [passengers’] point of departure, the duration of previous stays in other countries, and the address of their stay while in Greece’. They may also face random testing.
Travellers from Bulgaria, Romania, Malta, Sweden, Belgium, Spain, the Czech Republic and Israel are also now asked to produce a negative test result from within 72 hours of arrival.
When travellers do arrive in the country, they’ll find certain activities are still restricted. Greek authorities have hammered out new health protocols for hotels, swimming pools and beaches.
British travellers should also note that from anyone returning from the islands of Crete and Zante will have to self-isolate for 14 days. From October 10, on the other hand, the islands of Lesvos, Tinos, Serifos, Santorini and Zakynthos will be back on the UK’s official ‘travel-corridor’ list.
So now ferry services to several other major Greek islands have resumed, and flights are touching down again, it seems many of us may still be able to jet off on a balmy Aegean or Mediterranean getaway this autumn after all.
Remember, many countries are still warning against all non-essential travel and some are quarantining all overseas arrivals, including their own returning citizens. Check all the relevant restrictions before you think about travelling.