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Covid-19: Health Protocols for Greek Hotels and Flights to Greece Unveiled

Photo source: Greek Health Ministry (

Greek Tourism Minister Harry Theoharis on Friday unveiled a number of rules included in the health protocols for tourism that have been created to be applied in all hotels in the country and on incoming flights once the tourism season begins in Greece in the aftermath of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The protocols have been drafted by the Tourism Ministry in collaboration with the Infectious Diseases Commission of EODY, Greece’s public health organization, and will be submitted to tourism enterprises for consultation and the submission of proposals.

It is noted that the minister did not present the proposed health protocols in detail but referred to some of the rules included:

For flights

– For passengers to board a flight from abroad to Greece, they must have a valid health certificate that has been issued within the last 72 hours, stating that they are not carriers of the Covid-19 virus. Passengers without a health certificate, will not be allowed to board flights.

– There will be no empty seats on flights to, from and within Greece. The passenger capacity of all airplanes will be full in order to support airline companies.

– Only packaged snacks will be served to passengers on flights with a duration of up to four hours.

– Upon their departure from Greece, tourists will not be tested in order for them to avoid being quarantined in Greece.

For hotels

– One “quarantine hotel” will operate on every tourism destination in Greece, where tourists who are found to be Covid-19 carriers will be transported. The hotels will be leased to the ministry.

– All Greek accommodation units will be obliged to have a contract with a doctor, who will determine, either in person or remotely (telemedicine), whether a tourist should be tested for the coronavirus. All Covid-19 tests will be performed within 6 hours at the latest so that anyone who is tested to be positive can be transferred to a “quarantine hotel”.

– Special training on specific hygiene rules will be provided to the staff of every Greek hotel.

– There will be no buffets in Greek hotels (except maybe in very small units), as food will only be served.

– All sunbeds will have a distance between them and also a disposable cover for each beach visitor.

Greece’s tourism season is expected to begin in July with seasonal resorts hoped to open the same month. The country’s year-round hotels are scheduled to open on June 1.

In regards to flights, a common EU plan for air transport has yet to be decided on. However, Greece is currently discussing the possibility of creating safe travel zones between specific countries.

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  1. Dale Reply

    I love the way they invent a form out of thin air that only previously existed for dogs. No standardization? No problem. Probably just forge a piece of paper.

  2. Chrystalleni Tsiouti Reply

    Whoever does not like the rules of any country announcing its measures for incoming or outgoing travelling, can freely decide what to do for him/her self or his family! A country is free to announce its own rules and regulations for incoming/outgoing travelling- Travellers are just as free to choose whether to go to a country or not! It is a democratice world and each one of us has the freedom to choose what is best for him/herself just as democratically! Greece has also the right to announce its own measures and up to now it has acted very responsibly in regards to controlling the disease and in safeguarding its citizens!

  3. Nike Forsander Lorentsen Reply

    Happy to come back to Greece in the later maybe in the autum. I suppose when you write the flight can be full, no empty seat in between you mean the greek Aegean Airline.

  4. Deiv Kilby Reply

    ok for tourist but what about us business persons living in Greece and having to travel abroad and then return home to Greece?

    • julia bradshaw Reply

      yes me too. I need to know what to do when I want to go to UK on business. Do I have to be tested before coming back to Greece? I am not a tourist but then I could catch this while in the UK for a week on business.

  5. Corrado de Francesco Reply

    for this year bye bye Greece…

  6. Gerda Veldkamp Reply

    I don’t agree with my compatriot Gerrit: I will go to Greece whatever it takes!! There is no good year for me without spending a holiday there! I only hope that Greece will be open to all EU citizens and not only to a few with whom seperate deals have been made!

  7. Xeen Reply

    We travel by own car to Greece every summer past 15 years and spent there 4 weeks. It is 1800km travel throught 5 or sometimes 6 countries on Balkan.

    Rules like this probably made such travel impossible as we need to be tested before trip in own country (now there is few days queue to get tests here) and then do the same in Greece to be able travel back.

    Private transport in own car with only own family is much less COVID risk than travel with other 300 unknown persons on aircraft plus few hundreds in public transports to get into the airport.

  8. Michael kibaris Reply

    As much as I welcome any measure to enable safe travel, I still can’t see how practical and achievable the health certificates are. The tests we know of so far are only proof that you carry or not ANTIBODIES. So what good is a certificate for someone who is healthy and never previously infected by covid19?

  9. Michael kibaris Reply

    “… then spend their time unchecked in Greece …..”
    Well, so you assume that after all the suffering we have learned nothing and we are a bunch of irresponsible idiots? Give us some credit !
    Life has to go on!

  10. Ted Gorton Reply

    This sounds like a fair compromise of health versus economic concerns. It is easy to criticise!

  11. Hajé van der Weide Reply

    Een attest is schijnveiligheid. Een negatieve test zegt niets met een incubatietijd van tussen de 4 en 14 dagen. In die incubatietijd test je negatief, dus absoluut geen garantie dat je niet besmet bent. Jammer, Griekenland heeft het zo goed gedaan met de aanpak, misschien wel het beste van de wereld en nu gooien ze dat waarschijnlijk allemaal weg met alle noodlottige gevolgen van dien. Op korte termijn wellicht een oplossing maar op de lange termijn desastreus. Ik snap de frustratie en de angst voor gebrek aan inkomen maar weegt dat op tegen een grote kans op een piek midden in de vakantie? Dan krijgen ze het volgend jaar nog veel moeilijker omdat het beleid dan door de toeristen niet meer vertrouwd wordt.

  12. JAMES STONES Reply

    How can there be absolute proof that travellers have not caught Covid-19 during the 72 hours after being tested negative and received their health certificate, it is an open invitation to bring the virus to Greece. Three days is too long a time to become in contact with a COVID-9 carrier and then travelling by aeroplane without having another test. Then spend your time unchecked in Greece. What a ludicrous situation.

    • Stathis Reply

      “it is an open invitation to bring the virus to Greece”

      The virus is already in Greece. It is in most of Europe but in declining numbers and currently in manageable pockets in most countries. Even in the UK, it is now been proven to be concentrated largely in hospitals and senior homes now.

      Europe deserves a vacation after what it’s been through. and Greece deserves to host them. These rules are sensible and practical.

      Btw,. I’ve been working in a country who has handled the crisis very well. We’ve been working from home, voluntarily self-isolating and, by law, wearing masks when we venture out for supplies.

      I look forward to to my Greek island home and social distancing in my courtyard. It’s been hell but we can all continue to exercise caution and look forward to better days.

      • Daniel Negru Reply

        I agree ! Those who have worked hard and respected the social norms imposed by law, have the right to a vacation if not normal, at least decent. And Greece deserves to receive them, because Greece and the Greek people have shown that they are able to manage this crisis and organize themselves efficiently and logically, much more than other countries. I have already bought my plane and ferry ticket, I am frequently informed about the measures taken by the Greek authorities and I am perfectly aware that the rules and decisions that will be adopted must be respected. I go on vacation in Greece for 30 years, 2-3 times a year sometimes, I don’t want to give up doing it even now. So… kales diakopes kai stin hygeia sas vré paidias ! 🙂

    • Besmir Reply

      You are very right. This advise is ridiculous

  13. Gerrit, The Netherlands Reply

    This doesnt sound much like having a holiday!
    The valid health certificate is a huge barrier. In the Netherlands the few test kits are for medical staff and patients. NOT FOR HOLIDAYMAKERS.

    And Greece doesnt decide about the empty seats on a flight from Amsterdam. From our government we have to keep 1.5 meter social distancing in trains, busses and planes. Can you imagine how much a ticket will cost?

    I am sorry, but these rules are not made to get the holidaymakers to Greece. They rather look for a hasslefree alternative.

    • Regina Reply

      They were not speaking about dutch companies, they were speaking about greek air companies. p.s if your country is not able to provide you tests, maybe you can do it in private clinics? Or choose another destination?

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