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Outbound Traffic Peaks in Greece for Easter

Source: EC - Audiovisual Service / Photographer: Yorgos Karahalis

Source: EC – Audiovisual Service / Photographer: Yorgos Karahalis

Outbound traffic is set to peak on Thursday and Friday as Greeks leave the cities for Easter break. Authorities announced special measures ahead of the mass exodus. Orthodox services will be allowed for the first time in the two years of Covid-19 with adherence to protocols.

Ports, highways and airports are reporting an increase in traffic, which is four times greater than in 2021 for the Easter period. According to reports, 11,200 passengers departed from the port of Piraeus on Holy Monday compared to 3,200 a year ago and 13,000 on Holy Tuesday compared to 3,000 in 2021.

Outbound traffic on national highways is also up by 9 percent over pre-pandemic 2019, while dozens of ferries are departing from the ports of Piraeus and Rafina at full capacity despite the increase in ferry rates.

At the same time, booking levels at destinations are also high with some popular destinations expected to reach 100 percent capacity. Leading favorites for Greeks this year are traditional Easter getaways Corfu, Tinos, Hydra, Spetses, Patmos, Leonidio, Meteora, Nafpaktos, and Syros, among others.

Covid Measures in Place for Greek Easter

Greeks this year will be celebrating Orthodox Easter with full services on April 24 after two years of restrictions due to the pandemic and weeks before Covid certificates and masks are dropped for the summer tourism period.

Health experts are urging caution and encouraging mask wearing in churches and in crowded spaces.

The health ministry has announced that churchgoers will be required to display a vaccination or recovery certificate or a negative PCR / rapid test result to enter the church or to participate in any Easter-related or religious services. Children aged four to 17 can present a negative self-test declaration.

Mask wearing in all church areas is mandatory with the exception of priests, bishops and chanters.

On June 1, masks will no longer be mandatory.

Under current rules, international travelers are required to present their Covid vaccination and recovery certificates to be allowed admission into the country.

In the meantime, traffic police have announced special measures for the holiday to facilitate travel including a ban on heavy vehicles (3.5 tons or more) from national highways.

The Greek Tourism Ministry is welcoming the positive signs of post-Covid recovery as bookings for Easter and the summer are on the rise.

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