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Covid-19: After Retail, Greece Aims to Allow Intra-regional Travel 

© Olympia Odos

© Olympia Odos

Shops in Greece re-opened on Monday with a two-hour limit per shopper so as to avoid crowding, to be followed by the resumption of intra-regional travel, the re-opening of high schools and F&B services if Covid-19 figures remain in check, Greek authorities said.

Greek Investments & Development Minister Adonis Georgiadis said the operation of retail will serve as a “test run” and if all goes well the government will then allow interregional travel with a focus on opening ski resorts.

“Travel from one prefecture to the other has been discussed by the committee. One of the plans, if the figures allow, is to open ski resorts, because it is a seasonal activity dependent on travel,” he said.

Georgiadis was quick to point out that Greek police will be supervising adherence to the rules in central shopping areas.

Greek Investments & Development Minister Adonis Georgiadis (center) visited retail stores in the center of Athens on Monday, following their reopening. He was accompanied by his deputy, Nikos Papathanasis and the president of the Athens Traders Association (ESA), Stavros Kafounis. Photo source: ESA

Greek Investments & Development Minister Adonis Georgiadis (center) visited retail stores in the center of Athens on Monday, following their reopening. He was accompanied by his deputy, Nikos Papathanasis and the president of the Athens Traders Association (ESA), Stavros Kafounis. Photo source: ESA

More specifically, based on Covid-19 committee guidance, next on the list to resume activity are secondary education to be followed possibly by cafes and restaurants in February and only in outdoor spaces. It should be reminded that the ministry has announced subsidies for heating appliances.

In the last 24-hour period, Greece reported 237 new cases and 28 new deaths.

For the time being, authorities are ruling out the operation of gyms. The committee will convene on Friday to discuss the resumption of other activities such as OPAP games & gambling shops, driving schools, as well as fishing and hunting activities.

What applies to shopping

Under current regulations, consumers have a two-hour limit to shop, which however does not apply for hair and beauty salons. 

In order to ensure the market continues to operate, authorities are urging consumers to conform to precautionary measures including safe distancing, mask wearing at all times and to avoid crowding.

It should be noted that retail shops in areas listed in the “red category “will operate only by click away.

Businesses still not allowed to open include restaurant services and mobile catering units with the exception of delivery and take away, cinemas, motorcycle and caravan rentals, the organization of conferences and trade fairs, sports and leisure training services, theaters and music venues, libraries, museums, tourist attractions, historic sites and buildings, zoos and botanical gardens.

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About the Author
Chicago-born and raised, Maria Paravantes has over two decades of journalistic experience covering tourism and travel, gastronomy, arts, music and culture, economy and finance, politics, health and social issues for international press and media. She has worked for Reuters, The Telegraph, Huffington Post, Billboard Magazine, Time Out Athens, the Athens News, Odyssey Magazine and SETimes.com, among others. She has also served as Special Advisor to Greece’s minister of Foreign Affairs, and to the mayor of Athens on international press and media issues. Maria is currently a reporter, content and features writer for GTP Headlines.

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