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Covid-19 Travel Rules Stay the Same in Greece

Photo source: European Commission

The Hellenic Civil Aviation Authority (HCAA) recently extended its Covid-19 aviation directives (NOTAMs) that include the rules travelers arriving in Greece on international flights must follow.

Besides abolishing last week the once mandatory Passenger Locator Form (PLF), Greece has kept all other rules as before.

The extended rules will be in place until April 4 (the rules are evaluated every two weeks).

The Covid-19 aviation directives issued by the HCAA, are part of the Greek government’s efforts to curb the spread of the coronavirus (Covid-19) in the country.

Following are Greece’s entry rules in detail.

Travel rules for international arrivals

Athens, Greece - March 14, 2017: Air travellers walk to passport control at Athens International Airport.

Photo source: Shutterstock

EU Digital Covid Certificate (EUDCC) holders

There are no additional restrictions (such as the “Covid-19 testing before travel” requirement for the vaccinated) for European Union Digital Covid Certificate (EUDCC) holders coming from:

– the EU and Schengen zone countries
– the following 35 non-EU countries and territories that have joined the EUDCC system: San Marino, Albania, Andorra, Armenia, the Vatican, Northern Macedonia, Georgia, Switzerland, El Salvador, United Arab Emirates, the United Kingdom, Iceland, Israel, Liechtenstein, Lebanon, Morocco, Montenegro, Moldova, Monaco, Norway, New Zealand, Ukraine, Uruguay, Panama, Cape Verde, Serbia, Singapore, Thailand, Togo, Turkey, Tunisia, Benin, Jordan, Faroe Islands and Chinese Taipei.

The EU Digital Covid Certificate must include information on one of the following:

1) a vaccination certificate valid for nine months since full vaccination for Covid-19, and without validity limit for travelers who have received the booster dose

2) a recovery certificate valid for 180 days after its issue date

3) a negative PCR test performed within 72 hours before travel or a negative rapid antigen test performed within 24 hours before travel.

The rule is also in force for children aged 5 and over.

Non-EUDCC holders: Mandatory testing before entering the country

All other inbound travelers to Greece that do not have an EUDCC (including children over 5 years old) and regardless of their Covid vaccination status must present a negative PCR test result (performed within 72 hours before travel) or a rapid antigen test result (performed within 24 hours before travel) upon arrival.

Travelers from US, Canada & Australia

Vaccinated travelers entering Greece from the United States of America, Canada and Australia are exempt from additional restrictions upon arrival provided they have one of the following:

1) a vaccination certificate valid for nine months since full vaccination for Covid-19, and without validity limit for travelers who have received the booster dose

2) a recovery certificate valid for 180 days after its issue date

3) a negative PCR test performed within 72 hours before travel or a negative rapid antigen test performed within 24 hours before travel.

Random rapid testing on arrival

Photo source: WTTC

Photo source: WTTC

All travelers entering Greece, regardless if they are a holder of the EU Digital Covid Certificate, may be subject to random COVID-19 rapid testing at the airport.

If a passenger is selected for a rapid test and is positive for the coronavirus then he/she must quarantine for a total of five days at home or in a temporary facility as indicated by Greek authorities. The isolation period begins the next day, after diagnosed positive for Covid-19.

The mandatory quarantine can end after five days as long as passengers have no symptoms or their symptoms have subsided (no fever for the last 24 hours without the use of antipyretics). Self-isolation is extended in case fever persists and until it subsides. These passengers are required to wear only a high filtering respirator mask (FFP2 or N95) or a double mask (surgical and fabric) for at least another five days after the end of the self-isolation period.

Wearing a mask is mandatory

At the arrival and departure areas inside airports, as well as during all domestic and international flights, staff and passengers are required to wear a face mask at all times.

Passengers are also required to comply with instructions of airport and airline staff responsible for supervising, crowd management and passenger assistance, in order to maintain the necessary distances and to ensure safe boarding/disembarkation to avoid overcrowding.

The compulsory travel documents passengers must have with them are checked by airline staff. According to the HCAA, airline staff is obliged to ascertain that travelers have all the necessary documentation before they board flight to Greece. In the case of violation, the airline will have to to repatriate the passenger at its own expense.

The Greek government has detailed information on a dedicated website with the entry rules to Greece. The website includes frequently asked questions.

Travelers are advised to contact their travel agent or airline to confirm the requirements before their trip. Those in need of specific details on the travel rules for passengers of international flights are advised to contact their embassy or the General Secretariat for Civil Protection.

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  1. Federico Reply

    Fascist was, fascist keeps. Same of Italy where I live.

  2. sandy Reply

    I will feel very protected when I come to your wonderful country next month!!! I felt comfortable last year as well.

  3. Rick Ross Reply

    This cannot go on forever. Where is the data to justify these measures? People will simply travel elsewhere if they can, to avoid these illogical, ever-changing rules

  4. Eleni Reply

    We all know that these measures are not effective at all by now but it takes a lot to actually admit it in public… the rest of the world is moving forward but Greece chooses stupid rules again and then keep on advertising it’s open to welcome visitors etc how ironic and how sorry I feel for those working in hospitality hoping for a great summer ….

  5. Patricia Billimore Reply

    Can I enter Greece from the UK with a NHS Vaccination Certificate (printed type) without taking a PCR Test before departure or does it have to be a digital one?

  6. SC Reply

    I’m applaud the new rules – abolition of PLF and checking vaccination of people. Of course you need random testing. Why would that put anyone off? Surely if you have Covid or discover that on arrival or whilst in Greece, you would want/expect to isolate from others? Personally I feel happier visiting Greece if I know they are still testing to weed out infected people. I am fully vaccinated and boosted, will take a personal rapid test before (and probably a few days after) travelling, but still do not want to catch Covid. The Omicron variant is more infectious and anyone with it, or other variants, should keep away from others.

  7. T. Ferguson Reply

    So vaccinated people can catch and spread the virus but do not need to be tested, vaccines are proving not very effective, so your CONTROL looks a bit silly. Studies now show natural immunity is ten times better than vaccination and lasts a long time. Yet you only allow six months exemption, do you realise the stress you put on people having to get tested, who spent a lot of money on their holiday, the worry that the mickey mouse test might show positive. There is no logic in not testing the vaccinated other than discrimination against those who are not.

  8. Storm Reply

    It seems the Greek government thinks Greeks are more fragile and weak than the rest of the world…. Why else would they keep mandates that the rest of the world has scrapped? In the rest of EU/EEC vaccine certification is valid for 9 months, in Greece it’s 7 months (which in both cases is bollocks, as the protection from vaccines wear off in much less time, according to the producers own papers and research).

    And greeks only keep natural immunity for 3 months, in contrast to the rest of the EU where it is 6 months (which is bollocks, since studies document that natural immunity last for AT LEAST 20 months, and probably much longer).

    How long are the Hellenic people going to put up with this bs? “Avrio” may be never, and too late.

    • Paul Lord Reply

      The Greek government does not have the healthcare resources of richer countries to open everything up. Vaccinated people are getting sick but not ending up on machines. Unvaccinated should not have the same conveniences as vaccinated. That’s the big sell otherwise a lot LESS people would have got the jab

  9. CJ Reply

    Never let your guard down, have lost family and friends to this horrible virus so better be safe than sorry.

  10. Claire Cann Reply

    Greece needs to scrap random testing on arrival. This is so off-putting and unfair on international arrivals and with the spread of Omicron everywhere around the world, considerable community spread in Greece, what is the point?
    Travellers should not face random testing. Covid rules are surely obsolete now anyway.

  11. Dude Reply

    Going to be another lean year for tourism if they don’t short this rubbish out…

    • đoka Reply

      I agree with the comment, they will have even lower earnings this year if they don’t repeal the stupid rules.

    • MarLo Reply

      Yip

      With Submarine or as refugee you have a better chance….or at least you know what to expect

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