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Greek Health Protocols for Travel Agencies Offering Transfer Services – Rules for Car Rental

Travel Agency Photo

Friends Stock / Shutterstock.com

The Greek Tourism Ministry has released the health protocols that are to be followed by all tourism companies and travel agencies in Greece offering road transport services (tour buses with open or closed top) in order for their safe operation in the aftermath of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Rules for tourism companies – travel agencies:

• In accordance to current legislation, which is constantly revised in accordance with the epidemiological situation, the health protocols place a limit on the maximum number of passengers permitted onboard a tour bus in Greece. Every tour bus of public use and buses with open or closed top is allowed to carry 50 percent of its maximum passenger capacity.

• Tourism companies operating tour buses should be fully informed about the Covid-19 pandemic and offer training and guidance to their staff regarding the symptoms of the coronavirus: cough, fever, shortness of breath.

• Staff must also be informed and trained in accordance with the guidelines set by Greece’s public health organization (EODY) to meticulously maintain hygiene measures and hand washing techniques; properly use personal protective equipment and antiseptics; avoid contact with patients who have respiratory symptoms; and apply proper waste management practices.

• Bus staff must be trained to follow procedures to manage suspected cases – for example passengers that show symptoms of Covid-19 infection – in order to provide assistance according to EODY guidelines.

• Tourism companies operating tour buses must draw up a written plan to manage suspected Covid-19 cases, according to the instructions of EODY. This must be available in all vehicles.

• Antiseptics should be available at the entrance of each bus.

• It is recommended that a transparent plexiglas divider be placed to separate the driver from passengers.

• In the case of open-top tourist buses, disembarkation must take place prior to boarding.

• Seating is allowed in accordance to a special layout – one seat must be left vacant in all directions.

• The use of fabric face masks is mandatory throughout the journey.

• The continuous natural ventilation of buses is recommended.

• The meticulous disinfection of all areas is recommended after each transport or after the end of the shift, as well as the cleaning of surfaces and frequently touched surfaces (for example handrails) with an anticeptic solution after each route.

Photo Source: Visit Greece

Rules for car rental companies

• All vehicles must be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected following their use by different customers.

• A limit must be placed on the maximum number of passengers allowed in vehicles in accordance to current legislation which is revised in accordance with the epidemiological situation.

– Vehicles of up to seven seats are allowed to transport two passengers (and the driver),
– Vehicles of eight or nine seats are allowed to transport three passengers (and the driver),
– Passenger limit may be exceeded in the case of families with minors.

Van Transfer

Monkey Business Images / Shutterstock.com

Cars with a driver:
– Vehicles of up to five seats, can transfer one passenger and the driver. A person with special needs may be accompanied by one person.
– Vehicles of up to six or seven seats can transfer two passengers and the driver.
– Vehicles of eight or nine seats cam transfer three passengers and the driver.
– Passenger limit may be exceeded for the transfer of families with minors.
– The use of face masks is mandatory for all passengers and the driver.

The complete Greek version of the protocols for tourism companies and travel agencies in Greece that offer road transport services, can be downloaded below:

Health protocols for road transport services in Greece

About the Author
Eleftheria has worked for several financial newspapers, magazines and websites during the past 19 years. Between 2004 and 2014 she worked as a radio producer, reporter and presenter for the Greek and English language program of “Athina 9.84 FM”. She also has hands-on experience in the MICE industry.
  1. Elaine Katsoulis Reply

    We have been coming to Greece every year for decades. This situation is now completely illogical.
    How can it be that a family of four cannot travel in a 5 seater hire car costing around 300 euros and would need to hire a 9 seater minibus costing around 1000 euros. This is more than the flights cost and has completely put us off.
    Do they expect holidaymakers to be encouraged to visit with this restriction? Maybe it’s time for the authorities to rethink their decision and at least let families use the same size car as they do at home?

  2. Peter Gabriel Kis Reply

    This is completely insane and unnecessary. Totally ruins the lives of tourists and I mean in a 4-5 seat car normally you would travel with family or close feiends…so you can sit together with strangers on a plane plus the airport, stay at a restaurant and interact with different people anywhere but you cannot have your close family as passengers 😀
    Crazy…
    I hope this changes by August at least…

  3. Matthew Reply

    Does the restriction also apply to private cars or only to rented cars, ubers, taxis, etc…? 4 of us would travel by (own) car from abroad in July.

  4. Josef Held Reply

    This can never work.Cars for 5 should have at least 2 Passenger and Driver.
    7 Seater 4 Passenger and Driver.
    12 Seater Bus 6 Passenger and Driver.
    The cost for Tourists would be to high,not only for Transfer but also for Excursions.

  5. Robert Ferguson Reply

    This means two Taxis from the airport, every time we want to go in a taxi we would have to order two. So many rules to visit this year going to give it a miss after 20 years.

  6. Stephen Cronin Reply

    So, you need to wear a mask when travelling in a car but can take it off at your destination? How does that reduce infection transference, please? How does this apply to taxis from airports? Do my wife and I need to take separate taxis when transferring from Corfu Airport, when it opens, to Gouvia Marina, say?

    • JUDITH Reply

      Taxi driver and two people in the back seat are allowed. All must wear masks including the driver. It is not allowed to sit next to the driver.

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