Author Topic: Travel to Greece  (Read 10513 times)

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Offline Maik

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Travel to Greece
« on: Saturday, 14 March, 2020 @ 10:48:26 »
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Travelsupermarket is reporting a spike in online searches for destinations with no cases of coronavirus, including the Greek island of Santorini, which is up 165% from last week... By contrast, searches to destinations in Spain and Italy are down by 80%.
https://www.theguardian.com/travel/2020/mar/13/holiday-bookings-fall-coronavirus-tourism-industry-chalenge

A growing number of airlines are now introducing more flexible change policies to help customers who may want to postpone or cancel trips, according to lonelyplanet.com

Same approach being adopted by the cruise companies. As things stand, Costa Victoria won't be calling in to Kefalonia on 02 April as planned as its cruise schedule has been cancelled until 25 April, so it should arrive on 27 April as planned. Before that, Costa Mediterranea will be calling into Argostoli on 18 April, the same day Silver Spirit calls in. SilverSea Cruises are offering refunds to passengers who want to cancel or reschedule, as are P&O. The Oceana still due to call in to Argostoli on 28 April. MSC Opera has cancelled cruises in the Med from 10 March to 21 April but isn't due to call into Kef until 05 May.

Might be worth noting that the British Government is advising people aged 70 or above to skip cruising until things settle down: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/cruise-ship-travel

Travellers might want to review their insurance as some companies are withdrawing cover for any claims due to coronavirus, according to the BBC.

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Travel advice: coronavirus (COVID-19)
Guidance for British people travelling and living overseas following the outbreak of coronavirus (COVID-19).

In response to coronavirus measures we are advising against all and all but essential travel to some countries, cities and regions. You must check the travel advice to the country you are travelling to.
https://www.gov.uk/guidance/travel-advice-novel-coronavirus

https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/greece

Offline Maik

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Re: Travel to Greece
« Reply #1 on: Saturday, 14 March, 2020 @ 17:05:45 »
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Foreign travel advice
Greece


Updated:    14 March 2020
Latest update:    Health – updated information on coronavirus (COVID-19)
https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/greece

Think its been covered by GGi but there it is for anyone who wants to see the latest advice from gov.uk

Offline Maik

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Re: Travel to Greece
« Reply #2 on: Sunday, 15 March, 2020 @ 02:39:54 »
In case anyone's missed it in the links above, here's a link to information - in English - from
Εθνικός Οργανισμός Δημόσιας Υγείας / National Public Health Agency:
Novel Coronavirus COVID-19 – Advice for travellers.


Offline Maik

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Re: Travel to Greece
« Reply #3 on: Sunday, 15 March, 2020 @ 22:26:50 »
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Foreign travel advice
Greece


Updated:    15 March 2020
Latest update:    Summary and Health - updated information on coronavirus (COVID-19)
https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/greece


https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/greece/health#coronavirus

Offline Maik

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Re: Travel to Greece
« Reply #4 on: Monday, 16 March, 2020 @ 21:45:39 »
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Foreign travel advice
Greece


Summary

Updated:     16 March 2020
Latest update:     Update to information on travel restrictions in relation to coronavirus (COVID-19) including that all travellers arriving in Greece from abroad are required to go into 14 days’ self-isolation. ('Summary' and 'Health' pages)

The Greek government has announced that from 16 March, all people arriving in Greece from abroad are required to go into 14 days’ self-isolation.

They have also announced that Cruise ships and sailboats are prohibited from landing in Greek ports.
https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/greece

Offline Jolly Roger

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Re: Travel to Greece
« Reply #5 on: Tuesday, 17 March, 2020 @ 08:08:04 »
There are no cases of the coronavirus on Kefalonia, so I am thankful that cruise ships have been banned. The virus has spread quickly around the World mainly due to air travel, so I am hopeful that incoming International flights will also be banned.

Offline Maik

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Re: Travel to Greece
« Reply #6 on: Tuesday, 17 March, 2020 @ 13:00:13 »
There are no cases of the coronavirus on Kefalonia, so I am thankful that cruise ships have been banned. The virus has spread quickly around the World mainly due to air travel, so I am hopeful that incoming International flights will also be banned.

If there's no actual ban then it could, in effect, occur by default: anyone arriving from outside of Greece is expected to self-isolate for 14 days and there's little open to appeal to tourists, anyway.

Trouble is, many locals depend on tourism to put a roof over their head and food on the family table. Not an easy one.

What strikes me as a little strange is people interested in visiting places with no known coronavirus... once these people arrive the virus probably won't be far behind.


Edit: According to a report in gtp.gr, Most World Airlines Will Go Bankrupt By End of May
« Last Edit: Tuesday, 17 March, 2020 @ 13:05:46 by Maik »

Offline Maik

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Re: Travel to Greece
« Reply #7 on: Tuesday, 17 March, 2020 @ 21:27:50 »
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Travel advice: coronavirus (COVID-19)

Guidance for British people travelling and living overseas during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

Last updated 17 March 2020 - updated with latest advice against all non-essential travel worldwide

The Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO) now advises British people against all non-essential travel worldwide. This advice takes effect immediately and applies initially for a period of 30 days.

Quarantine while you are abroad

If the local authority where you are proposes to quarantine you for your own protection, you should follow their advice. When you are abroad, your safety and security is their responsibility.

If there are suspected cases of coronavirus where you are, you may need to remain in your hotel room or accommodation for 14 days, move to quarantine facilities, take tests for coronavirus and, if positive in some cases, be hospitalised abroad.

You should also contact your airline or travel company, and your insurance provider as soon as you can. We only organise assisted departure in exceptional circumstances.

We publish all our Travel Advice on GOV.UK.
https://www.gov.uk/guidance/travel-advice-novel-coronavirus





Travel Advice against all non-essential travel: Foreign Secretary's statement, 17 March 2020

Sounds some good advice in there: if you go abroad you can't be sure about getting a flight/ferry home. Makes sense not to go.


If you're in Greece, either residing or visiting:

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If you develop fever and/or respiratory symptoms such as shortness of breath or cough, the Greek Government advise that you stay indoors and immediately contact the National Public Health Organization’s 24 hr emergency Coronavirus line: 210 5212 054
https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/greece/health

Offline Maik

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Re: Travel to Greece
« Reply #8 on: Tuesday, 17 March, 2020 @ 21:34:45 »
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Greece risks missing out on tourism season

The suspension of the operations and payments of major international tour operators such as Tui AG and the FTI Group due to the coronavirus epidemic are creating a cash drought for Greek tourism and threatening to devastate the season’s prospects.

Unless the situation reverts to normal by July, the second half will also be missed, leading many tourism-related companies to bankruptcy.
http://www.ekathimerini.com/250726/article/ekathimerini/business/greece-risks-missing-out-on-tourism-season

Offline Maik

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Re: Travel to Greece
« Reply #9 on: Tuesday, 17 March, 2020 @ 21:49:05 »
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Greece has banned the entrance to any non-Greek or EU nationals in the country as of Thursday 6 a.m. unless it is for a 'very serious reason." Greeks or other European Union nationals arriving in the country are obliged to go into home quarantine for 14 days.
http://www.ekathimerini.com/250743/article/ekathimerini/news/coronavirus-cases-rise-to-387-as-fifth-death-reported

Offline Misty

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Re: Travel to Greece
« Reply #10 on: Wednesday, 18 March, 2020 @ 14:59:48 »
As Maik says, Greece and many other places rely on tourism let's just hope the survival rates are high in all ways for everybody.

Offline BeeTee

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Re: Travel to Greece
« Reply #11 on: Wednesday, 18 March, 2020 @ 15:08:19 »
I had an EasyJet flight booked for March 31st to Kef (not that I would be going now probably until things settle down) and now received notification that the flight is cancelled with an option of full refund or change of date. Any others with flights booked might want to check their flight status. 

Offline HiFi

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Re: Travel to Greece
« Reply #12 on: Wednesday, 18 March, 2020 @ 15:52:00 »
Looks like EJ have cancelled all LGW to EFL until 1st May........

Offline expat

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Re: Travel to Greece
« Reply #13 on: Wednesday, 18 March, 2020 @ 19:30:53 »
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I had an EasyJet flight booked for March 31st to Kef (not that I would be going now probably until things settle down) and now received notification that the flight is cancelled with an option of full refund or change of date. Any others with flights booked might want to check their flight status.

We got back from Tenerife last night, been in lockdown for our two last days, very disappointed with sleazyjet, both flights for yesterday were cancelled (we were due on the earlier flight) the day before i signed in to ejet, to check, it showed our flight had been cancelled but allowed me to book the later flight same day, which i did, it was lucky that i checked at 8 in the morning and changed because they did not send us an email until 4.30pm to tell us the flight had been cancelled, there was nothing left then! they classed it as a rescue flight, lots of people got caught out and ended up stuck, the airport was like a war zone, huge queues to get drinks from a vending machine, loads wearing masks, we have put our Kalamata trip on hold for May, we have flight booked for Kef in September, i am not holding my breath for that, we shall see!   

Offline TonyD

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Re: Travel to Greece
« Reply #14 on: Wednesday, 18 March, 2020 @ 19:44:43 »
I tried to get a refund for my May 5th flight this morning, and was told No, both airports are still open, so if you cancel it will be a Choice
Realistically, I'm guessing from BeeTee's comment above, easyJet will do the honourable thing nearer the time.
At the moment I have a consultant advising stay indoors until December, and easyJet intimating they'll be running flights in May
All so jolly confusing 😷
« Last Edit: Wednesday, 18 March, 2020 @ 19:47:56 by TonyD »

Offline TonyD

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Re: Travel to Greece
« Reply #15 on: Wednesday, 18 March, 2020 @ 22:05:04 »
Just received an email from easyJet


"...Due to the unprecedented circumstances, we’re launching our winter schedule early so that if you have an existing booking you can change to a flight for travel up until February 2021.

We’ve waived our change fees until further notice, so you can currently amend the date and/or destination of your existing flight booking for free. The quickest and easiest way to do this is via Manage Bookings on our app. We’ve also got a dedicated Customer Service number to support those wanting to change existing bookings: 0330 365 5030.

Until midnight on Tuesday 24/3/20, fares for our flights from 25th October 2020 - 28th February 2021 will be available at or below £29.99 one way per person.
These fares are available on our website to book now..."

I'm thinking, worth a punt. Book a cheap return for Oct now, then swallow the Admin charge to change it to Summer 2022, by when the Four Horseman should have gone home



Offline Maik

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Re: Travel to Greece
« Reply #16 on: Thursday, 19 March, 2020 @ 21:24:18 »
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Foreign travel advice
Greece


Summary

Updated:    19 March 2020
Latest update:    Update to information on travel restrictions and reduction in flight schedules related to coronavirus (COVID-19) ('Summary' and 'Health' pages)

In response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, the Greek government has announced that from 16 March, all people arriving in Greece from abroad are required to go into 14 days’ self-isolation. This is a mandatory measure, which the authorities will enforce by prosecution and fines. However UK nationals can continue to enter Greece and observe this restriction. UK nationals are not affected by the European Union’s measures to close EU borders to third country nationals.

Some airlines have begun to reduce their flight schedules to and from Greece, due to reduced demand. You should keep up to date with the latest advice from your airline, and contact them directly in case of disruption.

The authorities have imposed a ban on all cruise ships and sailboats landing in Greek ports.

The Greek authorities have introduced a number of precautionary measures in response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. These include the closure of schools, public meeting places, including bars and restaurants, museums and archaeological sites, beach clubs and shopping malls.

For further information on specific requirements, including what you should do if you develop symptoms of coronavirus in Greece, See Health.
https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/greece

Offline Maik

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Re: Travel to Greece
« Reply #17 on: Friday, 20 March, 2020 @ 02:58:15 »
Somewhat conflicting news below:

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Coronavirus – All hotels in Greece to shut down by end of April

The Greek Ministry of Tourism has announced the suspension of full-year operating hotels by the end of April. There will be one hotel open per regional unit capital city and three hotels in Athens and Thessaloniki. The measure will take affect from midnight March 22 to 23.
http://en.protothema.gr/coronavirus-all-greek-hotels-to-shut-down-by-end-of-april/


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Government orders seasonal hotels to remain closured through 30 April

n its first measure regarding the tourism sector beyond financial support for employees due to the Coronavirus pandemic , who are included in horizontal measures to support labour, the government has ordered the closure of seasonal Greek hotels and other tourist facilities through 30 August, though the tempest for tourism is expected to drag through the summer tourist season.

As yet there is no ban on the operation of year-round hotels and other tourist facilities.

The closures ordered by the government – which pertain to seasonal tourist facilities that have not opened yet – aside from hotels covers camping facilities, youth hostels, condohotels, and furnished villas and homes.
https://www.tovima.gr/2020/03/19/international/government-orders-seasonal-hotels-to-remain-closured-through-30-april/

Most news sources go with the all year hotels version.

Offline Maik

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Re: Travel to Greece
« Reply #18 on: Friday, 20 March, 2020 @ 02:59:25 »
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Coronavirus lockdown: No flights to & from Greece starting from Sunday

The decision to halt all passenger flights to Greece due to a coronavirus on Sunday afternoon will be announced by the government.

The decision will exclude specific cargo flights mainly for catering products.
http://en.protothema.gr/coronavirus-lockdown-no-flights-to-from-greece-starting-from-sunday/

Offline Maik

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Re: Travel to Greece
« Reply #19 on: Friday, 20 March, 2020 @ 21:08:35 »
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Foreign travel advice
Greece


Summary

Updated:    20 March 2020
Latest update:    Update to information on planned closure of most accommodation at midnight (local time) on 22 March due to coronavirus (COVID-19) ('Summary' and 'Health' pages)

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) recommends that British nationals who wish to leave Greece, contact their travel operator to make arrangements to do so as soon as possible. This is in response to the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and in line with various controls and restrictions imposed by the Greek authorities. British nationals in Greece should follow the advice of the Greek authorities. See coronavirus
https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/greece


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Coronavirus

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) recommends that British nationals who wish to leave Greece, contact their travel operator to make arrangements to do so as soon as possible. This is in response to the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and in line with various controls and restrictions imposed by the Greek authorities. British nationals in Greece should follow the advice of the Greek authorities.

The Greek government has announced that from 16 March, all people arriving in Greece from abroad are required to go into 14 days’ self-isolation.

This is a mandatory measure, which the authorities will enforce by prosecution and fines. UK nationals are not affected by the European Union’s measures to close EU borders to third country nationals.

The Greek authorities announced on 19 March that most accommodation, including hotels, will close at midnight (local time) on Sunday 22 March, in order to help prevent the spread of coronavirus. At present, AirBnB accommodation remains available.

Flights continue to operate between Greece and the UK. Overall airline capacity between Greece and the UK remains good. Some airlines have begun to reduce their flight schedules to and from Greece, due to reduced demand. You should keep up to date with the latest advice from your airline, and contact them directly in case of disruption.

The authorities have imposed a ban on all cruise ships and sailboats landing in Greek ports.
https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/greece/coronavirus


Offline Maik

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Re: Travel to Greece
« Reply #20 on: Friday, 20 March, 2020 @ 21:31:30 »
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Mandatory 14-Day Quarantine for Passengers Arriving in Greece from Abroad in Effect from Friday Noon

A mandatory 14-day quarantine for those coming to Greece by plane from abroad will apply from noon on Friday, March 20 for all people that arrive in Greece by air. The measure was imposed by Deputy Citizen Protection and Crisis Management Minister Nikos Hardalias for the containment of the spread of coronavirus.

Police will check on passengers to ensure they are observing the home quarantine rules, either through on-the-spot inspections or through frequent calls to their land line at home.

These will begin once an Act of Legislative Content outlining the above measures is issued by the citizen protection ministry, while according to sources, those that infringe the measures will face charges, along with a 5,000-euro fine.
https://www.thenationalherald.com/292982/mandatory-14-day-quarantine-for-passengers-arriving-in-greece-from-abroad-in-effect-from-friday-noon/

Offline Maik

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Re: Travel to Greece
« Reply #21 on: Friday, 20 March, 2020 @ 23:08:06 »
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Foreign travel advice
Greece


Summary

Updated:    20 March 2020
Latest update:    Update to information on additional measures announced 20 March, including restrictions on travel to Greek islands (for all non-permanent island residents) due to to coronavirus (COVID-19) (Summary and Coronavirus pages)

On 20 March, the authorities announced restrictions on travel to the Greek islands, with effect from 0600 local time on Saturday 21 March. This is to prevent the spread of coronavirus. In order to purchase a ticket to travel to an island, you will need to provide proof of permanent residence (via a tax certificate) on the island to which you wish to travel. One-way travel from islands to the mainland is not restricted.
https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/greece/coronavirus

Offline Maik

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Re: Travel to Greece
« Reply #22 on: Monday, 23 March, 2020 @ 22:01:00 »
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Foreign travel advice
Greece

Summary

Updated:    23 March 2020
Latest update:    Addition of information on the suspension of direct flights between UK and Greece from midnight local time on 23 March, due to coronavirus (COVID-19) ('Coronavirus','Return to the UK' and 'Summary' pages)

On 23 March, the Greek authorities announced the suspension of direct commercial flights between the UK and Greece (in both directions) with effect from midnight local time on 23 March. This suspension will be in place until 3pm local time on 15 April. At present, it is possible to travel indirectly between Greece and the UK (and vice versa). You should contact airlines or travel operators directly for more information. Please contact the British Embassy in Athens if you need assistance. You should note that the UK advises against all non-essential travel overseas. Travellers to Greece must follow restrictions imposed by Greek authorities. See Coronavirus
https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/greece

Offline Maik

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Re: Travel to Greece
« Reply #23 on: Thursday, 26 March, 2020 @ 23:49:44 »
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Foreign travel advice
Greece

Summary

Updated:     26 March 2020
Latest update:    Addition of information on possible repatriation measures with relevance to British nationals who are permanent residents of Greece ('Coronavirus' and 'Return to the UK' pages)
https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/greece

Offline Maik

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Re: Travel to Greece
« Reply #24 on: Thursday, 16 April, 2020 @ 17:35:33 »
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Foreign travel advice
Greece

Summary

Updated:     16 April 2020
Latest update:    Updated to reflect extension on ban on direct UK-Greece/ Greece-UK flights until 15 May; eligibility of some UK nationals for financial assistance in returning to UK; ban on swimming in public places ('Coronavirus', 'Return to the UK', and ‘Safety and Security’ pages)
https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/greece

Return to the UK