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Covid-19 Lockdown Rules for Athens, Attica Announced

Photo source: Athens Traders Association (ESA)

Photo source: Athens Traders Association (ESA)

Greek authorities have tightened lockdown restrictions in Athens and the surrounding Attica region (including the islands and the region of Trizinia) in an effort to stop the further spread of the coronavirus (Covid-19).

Following Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis’ announcement on Tuesday, Civil Protection Deputy Minister Nikos Hardalias on Wednesday announced the rules that will be in force as of February 11 and until the end of the month on February 28.

Attica’s harder lockdown sees most retail stores closed, as well as hairdressers, beauty salons and bookstores.

All schools will be closed and students will follow lessons once again remotely via tele-education.

Masks, curfew, outside movement

The existing 9pm-5am overnight curfew will remain on weekdays and switch to 6pm-5am on weekends, as previously announced.

The basic Covid-19 lockdown and health rules are still in place for Attica. These include mask wearing in all public places, following all social distancing rules and requesting permission for outside movement (during the hours beyond the curfew) for specific reasons by sending an SMS to the five-digit mobile phone service 13033.

It is noted that movement among municipalities in Attica is allowed, provided residents have sent an SMS requesting permission.

What businesses will be open and other useful information

Businesses that will remain open in Attica:

  • Supermarkets, grocery stores, bakeries
  • Pharmacies
  • Pet Shops
  • Telecommunication stores (for specific services including the repair of devices and bill payments)
  • Hearing aids stores (only by appointment)
  • Shops selling wigs and hair extensions (only by appointment)
  • Flower shops
  • Retail businesses that operate through e-shop
  • Dry cleaning stores
  • Gas stations
  • Vehicle inspection services (KTEO) (only by appointment)
  • Car repair shops (only by appointment except for emergency cases)

All shops have the option to open from 7am until 8:30 pm (on weekdays) and until 5:30 pm (on Saturdays). On Sundays, only grocery stores, patisseries and bakeries are allowed to operate until 5:30 pm. Supermarkets can operate on Sundays but exclusively to carry out online orders (customers are not allowed to shop in person) until 5:30 pm.

Flower shops, only during February 13-14, can operate via the “click-away” method (customers can pick up purchases in person following online or phone orders) and the “click in a shop” system (consumers can enter shops only after making an appointments in advance). The “click in a shop” method allows only a limited number of consumers in a store at the same time.

Farmers markets can operate but under strict social distancing measures.

F&B services
All restaurants, cafes and bars remain closed as previously. F&B establishments that operate in hotels are excluded from the suspension, as long as they only serve hotel guests.
All F&B businesses continue to offer take away, drive-through and delivery services.

For activity related to shopping, consumers must send an SMS (option 2) to 13033 and keep it as proof of permission for movement. The SMS must be shown to authorities upon request. Movement for shopping can last two hours, which begins from the time of sending (and approval) of the SMS for movement.

Hospitals and diagnostic centers
– Patients are allowed only one visitor / chaperone
– Limit of scheduled surgeries up to 80% (oncological and emergency cases are excluded from the

Churches can hold services but without the presence of worshippers. Religious ceremonies such as weddings, baptisms, funerals and memorials, only up to nine people are allowed to attend.

Visits to banks are allowed only if specific transactions can not be made online.

Public services, private companies
Visits to public services and private companies offices are allowed only by appointment. Strict social distancing measures apply for both staff and citizens.

All hotels throughout the region of Attica remain open under the health protocols in force.

Transportation/travel rules

Travel by public transport, ferries, taxis and private cars
Public transport (all means): 65 percent capacity
Ferries: 50 percent capacity (65 percent capacity if a vessel has cabins)
Taxis: Only two passengers are allowed (underaged children are excluded from the rule)
Private cars: Only 2 people, including the driver, are allowed per private car (underaged children are excluded from the rule)

Travel by plane: Athens International Airport is open to domestic and international travel, but restrictions are in force. Press here for more information.

Travel by sea: The transport of passengers by private pleasure boats, commercial tourist vessels and water taxis from mainland Greece to the islands and vice versa, as well as between islands, is prohibited.

Intra-regional travel
It is noted that non-essential travel between prefectures (domestic travel) by car, plane or ferry is banned and allowed only for:

– business reasons
– health reasons
– returning to permanent residence (proof of residence, such as the E1 tax return form, will be required)
– for attending a ceremony (such as a funeral) under the rules provided by law
– family reunification
– the one-time transfer of a university student from place of permanent residence
– the transfer of a student (and a chaperone) to attend exams
– the purpose of harvesting agricultural products

Sports facilities
The operation of organized sports facilities are suspended, except:

– for teams of up to three people, including the coach and without the presence of spectators.
– for training and competitions of the national teams and the teams participating in the Superleague I, and II, Basket league and Volleyleague, as well as in European competitions, without the presence of spectators.

It is noted that all archaeological sites, museums and gyms are closed in Attica and the rest of Greece.

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