Will they? Won't they? Yes they will! After much back-and-forth, Greek authorities have confirmed today that entry restrictions will be dropped on Monday, May 1.
A spokesperson from Marketing Greece — one of Greece's major tourism organizations — confirmed to Lonely Planet that tests, vaccination or recovery certificate will no longer be required for entry from next week. It follows a reccomendation from the Committee of Health Experts that was adopted by the government on April 28.
From May 1, visitors will also enjoy full access to museums, archaeological sites, restaurants and other culture and entertainment venues for which vaccination or recovery certificates were previously required.
"Greece was one of the first countries to establish a series of health and safety measures in the hospitality sector that guaranteed a safe environment for those who chose our country for their holidays. This has paid off with the trust of millions of travellers that enjoyed their long-awaited time in Greece," said Greece’s Minister of Tourism, Vassilis Kikilias.
"This season, that has already started, is an opportunity for a less logistically and stress-free prior-to-arrival procedure but equally safe journey to witness Greek hospitality, explore new destinations and discover your next favourite spot in the country."
The news was given a false start earlier this month when Greece's Health Minister Thanos Plevris said at a press conference that authorities would suspend COVID-19 protection measures in May.
He was referring to the suspension of COVID passes required for entry to certain public venues in Greece, but his comments were misinterpreted arcoss various media reports to include all certificates, including those required for entry to the country—a decision that hadn't yet been reached.
Now, travelers who are planning to travel to Greece this summer can be assured that they no longer have to present any COVID certificates to enter the country or to enter venues like restaurants, bars, museums and cafes.
Mask wearing is still required indoors but that mandate will be lifted on June 1.
If you're planning on traveling to Greece, here's what you need to know about the latest requirements.
Entry requirements for Greece until May 1
Currently, those who hold a valid European Union digital COVID-19 certificate do not need to present proof of a negative pre-arrival COVID-19 test. This includes travelers from the EU and Schengen zone as well as 33 other non-EU destinations that have joined the EU digital COVID Certificate system.
Travelers from Australia, Canada and the United States can also enter by showing one of the following: proof of vaccination, proof of recovery from the virus or a negative COVID-19 PCR test administered 72 before departure or a negative antigen test administered no more than 24 hours prior to departure.
Visitors from all other countries, including children over the age of five, need to present proof of a negative COVID-19 PCR test administered 72 before departure or a negative antigen test administered no more than 24 hours prior to departure.
These requirements will be dropped on May 1.
Proof of vaccination required to enter some venues until May 1
Some spaces, like enclosed eating areas, entertainment facilities (cinemas, theaters), museums, exhibition centers, fitness centers and sports venues, require proof of vaccination to enter.
This rule will be suspended on May 1.
Face masks continue to be required
Greece still requires masks indoors until June 1 so tuck one in your pocket. On public transportation, you'll need to double mask or wear a high-quality mask (such as an N95/FFP2). You can be fined for not wearing one. Taxis are limited to three people in addition to the driver unless they are carrying members of the same family.
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