Greece is happy to be welcoming visitors again, with international and domestic flights now able to reach all airports in Greece (with exemptions from certain countries). It’s possible to travel throughout the mainland and to all Greek islands.
Hotels, shops, restaurants, bars, cafes, archaeological sites etc have reopened. It is, of course, possible that some hotels and experiences aren’t yet operating. So please check the latest information before planning your visit by referring to Greece’s Civil Protection Ministry, the Athens International Airport and the Protocol for Arrivals in Greece, and ensure that you fill in a Passenger Locator Form prior to travelling by plane or boat.
Social distancing measures will, of course, continue to be implemented and the use of face masks is compulsory in many indoor places, so please be prepared. There will also be random testing at airports and land borders.
Stay safe and happy holidays.
The Discover Greece team
If you are travelling to areas with presumed ongoing community transmission of COVID-19 you should:
- Wash your hands regularly with soap and water or a disinfectant, especially after coughing or sneezing, before handling and consuming food.
- Avoid contact with animals (dead or alive), meat markets and meat products (such as raw meat).
- Avoid visiting live bird and animal markets.
- Avoid contact with patients who appear ill with respiratory symptoms.
During your stay in areas with presumed ongoing community transmission of COVID-19 you should:
- Postpone your trip if you have fever and/or respiratory symptoms such as cough or shortness of breath.
- Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or with your elbow (not with your hands) when you cough or sneeze.
- Avoid contact with other people if you have fever and/or respiratory symptoms such as cough or shortness of breath.
After your return from areas with presumed ongoing community transmission of COVID-19:
- Watch your health closely for 14 days.
- If you develop a fever and/or respiratory symptoms such as shortness of breath or cough 14 days after you have returned, it is recommended that you stay indoors and immediately seek medical attention mentioning your recent trip, or contact the National Public Health Organization (210-5212000, 210-5212054).
The following information is from Athens International Airport.
In the context of the protective measures in place to safeguard the passengers’, the airport community employees’ and the wider public’s health and safety, Athens International Airport is adhering to the Authorities’ instructions, and to official guidelines.
We are constantly working closely with the National Public Health Organization (EODY), whilst all instructed measures are diligently implemented.
Specific instructions have been issued by EODY for passengers and airport employees across Greece to respond to the COVID-19 crisis. These can be found on the EODY site.
More specifically, at Athens International Airport, as in all Greek airports, a cluster of measures including, among other, flight monitoring procedures, the presence of doctors and other emergency personnel, as well as the dissemination of information for the maximum possible awareness.
Airport employees and crews are well aware of the warning factors that must be immediately reported to the Airport’s Health Authorities.
Airport employees are constantly updated on the most recent developments regarding COVID-19 and the Authorities instructions for the avoidance of the widespread of COVID-19.
Specific measures currently in place:
In accordance with the guidelines of the national health authorities, the meticulous observance of rules for hand washing / sanitizing and for respiratory hygiene, the use of face masks, physical distance keeping, very good cleaning and sanitizing of spaces and surfaces, especially of those frequently hand touched, are the basis for the protection of passengers and employees at Athens International Airport. Passengers travelling on domestic or international flights #athensairport, should bear in mind the following:
- Entrance in the Main Terminal Building and the airport premises is permitted to ticketed passengers only. Exceptions exist for specific cases (escorted minors, escorted passengers with disabilities).
- The use of face masks is obligatory after entering the airport terminal; the mask will be kept throughout the passenger’s stay in the airport areas (Joint Ministerial Decision of May17th, Gov. Gazette Bulletin 1869/Δ1α/ΓΠ.οικ.30612). Children under the age of 6 as well as those with respiratory problems are excluded. Passengers should also be aware that they may be asked to temporarily remove their mask during security and identity check processes.
- The use of face masks is also obligatory during boarding, as well as during the flight. It is recommended to change the face mask every 4 hours or in the case of the face mask being wet or soiled. Make sure you have enough quantity for your entire trip.
- Airport employees are equipped with all personal protection items (masks, gloves, sanitizing liquids), which they are using at all times during their work.
- Hand sanitizer dispensers are available in over 300 spots at the airport, including bathrooms and restrooms, for use by the passengers during the departure and arrival processes.
- Polycarbonic panels are used for additional protection during the provision of services conducted in direct contact with employees (ticket desks, information counters, etc.).
- Keeping distances is mainly a behavioural measure for passengers and airport staff, and a distance of 1.5 metres should be kept during all phases of the travelling processes on ground. Special signage is placed on floor surfaces alerting the public on this necessity, which is also communicated through airport screens and banners.
- Facilities, machinery, equipment and frequently touched surfaces in the airport areas, are cleaned and sanitized regularly with special materials.
- Airport, airlines and ground handlers’ staff are providing information to passengers with regards to hygiene measures and to the relevant procedures applied in the airport, as well as on board, and supervise the implementation of the necessary measures (physical distancing and face masks).
- Information and guidelines regarding hygiene measures are communicated through a constant flow of public announcements (PAs are regularly made through the airports public announcement system), as well as through visual content on the airport screens and relevant signage in all areas.
- Passengers are encouraged to select e-services options prior to their departure to the airport (web check-in) as well as within the airport areas (web check-in, self check-in, baggage tag printing, drop off baggage, e-parking).
- Seating in all waiting areas has been re-arranged, in order to allow for minimum distances to be kept. It is recommended that one seat be left vacant next to each seated passenger. Families or couples travelling together do not have to keep this distance.
- The air-conditioning system in the airport facilities provides fresh, renewed, and top-down recycled air, in order to limit the horizontal air circulation. Furthermore, the air is filtered for dust, viruses and bacteria or fungi, through special filters.
- For the protection of Passengers with Reduced Mobility, all the above measures are meticulously applied, while, in addition, rules for priority boarding, avoiding lengthy stay in closed areas including the airport’s PRM facility, are implemented. PRM wheelchairs and Ambulifts are cleaned and disinfected regularly, before and after their use, in order to secure the maximum possible protection of passengers against Covid-19.
- You must comply with the health protection measures in force at the airport – these measures are constantly communicated through visual material and repeated audio announcements.
The above measures are subject to the continuous evaluation as to their effectiveness and will be modified as deemed necessary and instructed by the competent State Authorities.
As per the joint Ministerial decision (ΦΕΚ:2602/28 Ιουνίου 2020/Δ1α/ΓΠ.οικ.40383) issued by the Hellenic Republic, until 25.10.2020 all passengers travelling on international flights to Greece are required to fill in and electronically submit the compulsory Passenger Locator Form (PLF) at least 24 hours before departure. Families may submit a joint e-PLF form.
Urgent cases for travelling falling in shorter period than the predetermined time limit of PLF submission before the flight will be examined per case by the State Authorities & acceptance or rejection will be notified to applicants through an e-mail message.
The Form can be found here: https://travel.gov.gr/#/
Travellers will receive a confirmation e-mail upon submission of the PLF, which is a compulsory travel document that has to be presented during boarding. Travellers will receive their PLF unique Quick Response (QR) code on the day of their scheduled arrival in Greece (at midnight– 00.01 am) and will be notified via email (the QR code will be provided with a link in the confirmation email).
Airlines are required, prior to accepting passengers for boarding, to check the confirmation receipt of PLF submission at the predefined time limit before flight & the response e-mail with a PLF QR code. If travel departure begins prior to the day of arrival, travellers are allowed to board after showing the confirmation email (and not necessarily the QR code which is scheduled to arrive at midnight of the day of arrival.)
For further information or questions regarding the completion & operation of the form, you may contact the PLF Help Desk of travel.gov.gr at telephone 0030 215 560 5151 (Mon to Fri 09:00-21:00 LT) or email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Passengers having failed to fill in and submit the PLF on time and thus to demonstrate a valid QR code upon arrival, will be subject to a fine as per provisions of the Joint ministerial decision of June 28th.
Information about the Covid-19, by the National Public Health Organization (EODY), can be found here: https://eody.gov.gr/en/covid-19/
In accordance with the Greek government's decisions there is a ban of entry applying to all non-EU citizens until 25.10.20, as announced by the Hellenic Civil Aviation Authority. Certain exemptions are also applicable as follows:
Exemptions apply for citizens and permanent residents from Australia, Canada, Georgia, Japan, New Zealand, Rwanda, South Korea, Thailand, Tunisia, Uruguay, the United Arab Emirates.
In order to prove their place of residence, third country nationals may present their residence permit, work permit, identity card, driving license or other documents, provided that it states place of residence.
Also exempted from the restriction are:
- EU member states nationals & the Schengen agreement, including their spouses or persons with whom they have a cohabitation agreement, as well as their minor children.
- Passengers travelling for essential reasons, including health issues, business purposes, imperative family reasons, persons in need for international protection
- Medical & nursing staff, researchers & health professionals if they demonstrate at the points of entry evidence of their professional status and provided that their entry into the country relates to the exercise of their duties.
- Long—term residents or EU member states or Schengen agreement and 3rd country nationals holding a residence permit or in EU member state or Schengen agreement.
- Members of government delegations
- Members of diplomatic delegations or consulate authorities & delegations, members of international & European organizations, members of humanitarian organizations performing their duties, military & security forces officials & of general secretariat of civil protection.
- Personnel employed in the transport section, including seamen, aircraft crews and the crews and technical personnel of the leased aircraft firefighting equipment, lorry drivers & the absolutely necessary support staff for the transport of goods.
- Transit passengers
- Persons caring for the elderly & people with disability (disabled)
- Seasonal workers in the field of agriculture (The above persons are obliged to display documents & undergo laboratory medical examination.)
- Third country nationals subject to prohibition herein have the right to submit request to the Greek consular authority of their place of residence or stay for their exceptional entry in the country for business or personal reasons.
A completed electronic Passenger Locator Form (e-PLF) is also compulsory for all inbound passengers. Families may submit a joint e-PLF form. In response to the e-PLF submission, passengers will receive a QR code displaying their selection for a PCR test upon arrival in Athens. The QR codes are addressed to passengers at midnight on the day of travel.
Until 25.10.2020 (included), all individuals arriving from Bulgaria, Romania, Hungary, Czech Republic, Poland, the United Arab Emirates, Malta, Belgium, Spain, Albania & North Macedonia must display (additional to the PLF form and QR code) a negative molecular test (PCR) for Covid-19, conducted up to 72 hours before arrival in Greece.
Until 25.10.2020, 23:59 all permanent residents of the Russian Federation entering the country from the Russian Federation must display (additional to the PLF form and QR code) a negative molecular test (PCR) for Covid-19, conducted up to 72 hours before arrival in Greece. Flights from Russian Federation are limited to 500 passengers per week.
Until 25.10.2020, 23:59 all permanent residents of Israel entering the country from Israel must display (additional to the PLF form and QR code) a negative molecular test (PCR) for Covid-19, conducted up to 72 hours before arrival in Greece. Flights from Israel are limited to 5000 passengers per week.
Flights to/from Albania & North Macedonia are only allowed from/to Athens International Airport until 25.10.2020.
All flights from/to Turkey are suspended until 25.10.2020. In addition, all flights originating from any airport in the territory of Catalonia of Spain are suspended until 25.10.2020
Transit passengers via AIA, including those from restricted origins, are not required to display a negative molecular test (PCR) upon arrival, nor to submit a Passenger Locator Form (e-PLF).
For further information or questions regarding the procedure, you may contact the General Secretariat of Civil Protection at 0030 2103359002-3 or email at email@example.com .
Airline operators shall ensure that passengers are duly informed before boarding and that they meet the requirements of traveling according to relevant measures in effect at the destination country at the time of travelling, otherwise they must deny boarding as per the Greek government's legislative acts. For further information you may contact your airline. Detailed contact information of airlines is provided in our website at the following link: https://www.aia.gr/traveler/travellers-info/airlines/
It is highly advisable that passengers get informed on the restrictions announced by their country of origin on their return from Greece. Some countries require a PCR test conducted some hours prior arrival, whilst others have issued restrictions for arriving passengers.
Governmental decisions regarding restrictions or requirements for the travelling public are updated at regular intervals and ad-hoc depending on the pandemic situation.
Depending on their QR code/confirmation, visitors will be subject to test upon arrival. Upon being tested, the visitor is free to move to the final destination. The test results are expected to become available within 24 hours. During that time, passengers who are tested are advised to practice social distancing according to local guidelines and self-monitoring for symptoms that could indicate COVID-19. In case of such symptoms, medical advice and/or contact with the National Public Health Organization (EODY) Operations Centre should be immediately sought.
Only in case they test positive, the authorities will contact them and proceed with the health protocol in place. The procedure of a 24-hour stay at a dedicated hotel, under Greek State supervision, is no longer valid.
For further information or questions regarding the procedure, you may contact the General Secretariat of Civil Protection at 0030 2103359002-3 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
In case you need to contact the National Public Health Organization (EODY) Operations Centre, you may call (0030) 210 5212054 or e-mail at email@example.com
- The cleaning services have been intensified across the airport facilities.
- The routine cleaning materials have been replaced with fast acting disinfectants.
- Cleaning and sanitizing of frequently touched surfaces, such as door handles, elevator buttons, handrails, escalators etc., has been intensified.
- In the event of an emergency involving a virus suspicious case, special disinfection or spraying is carried out, in accordance with the Health Authorities instructions.
Instant hand sanitizers have been installed in all toilets, in all the departure gates, and in more than 300 locations within the terminals.
The Health Check Authority takes control, for carrying out the preliminary health check and advises of further actions as per EODY guidelines. Should a transfer to a reference hospital be deemed necessary, this is effected by a properly equipped EKAV ambulance.
Due care is taken for Passengers in proximity to the suspect cases. Cases of certain suspicion are hosted inside the dedicated Airport quarantine facility, in accordance with the decision of the Health Check Authority and until further transfer to a reference Hospital.
The Health Check Authority takes control, carries out the preliminary health check and advises of further actions as per EODY guidelines.
EODY takes control and provides instructions on the handling of such cases. In principle, seriously infected countries are prohibited from air transportation (flights) to/from Greek airports. Relevant announcements are made by the pertinent Authorities.
Passengers must contact EODY in the four (4) digit line 1135 for further advice, otherwise the Airline or the ground handler employees must be notified for further action and notification to the Airport Health Authority.
There are no restrictions imposed for cargo transportation so far.
Terminal facilities & services
Various Cafes/Snack Bars are available throughout the Terminal Building.
Smoking in the Terminal Building is not allowed, and the designated smoking lounges are currently closed due to COVID-19 prevention measures.
- Aegean Airlines CIP lounge at the airport's Schengen Area at Departures Level is operational from 05:00-23:00.
- Aegean Airlines lounge at Non-Schengen Area, is available from Tuesday to Thurday 06:00-24:00 and Friday to Monday 06:00-22:00.
- Goldair Handling lounge at Schengen Area, is operational from 03:30 to 22:00.
- Skyserv Handling Services – Aristotelis Onasis lounge at Non-Schengen Area is available from 11:00 to 19:00 daily.
- Skyserv Handling Services – Melina Merkouri lounge at Intra Schengen Area is available Monday to Saturday from 06:00 to 20:00 & on Sunday from 06:00 to 21:00.
- Lufthansa - Business Lounge is operational from 05:30 to 19:00.
Access to/from airport
All public means of transport (Bus, Metro, Suburban Rail and regional buses) are in operation at present.
More information regarding specific routes is available through the following links:
- Bus services: http://www.oasa.gr/
- Metro services: http://stasy.gr/index.php?id=1&no_cache=1&L=1
- Suburban Rail Services: https://tickets.trainose.gr/dromologia/
- Regional buses: For schedule details a interested parties may call either the Airport Call Center 210 3530000 or at KTEL Rafina master station at 22940 23440