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“Vaccination certificate not mandatory for traveling to Greece,” says Tourism Minister

“The vaccination certificate will not be a precondition for somebody to travel to Greece,” Tourism Minister Haris Theoharis said on Thursday. He added that the relevant proposal by Prime Minister Kyrikaos Mitsotakis to European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen was aiming to stir the waters so that the European Union coordinates on this issue.

Speaking to Skai TV, Theoharis said that tests will be performed on those who have not been vaccinated, but it remains to be seen what will happen based on the [health] committee’s decisions whether whether they will be carried out on all.

See also: Greek PM Mitsotakis proposes to EU “vaccination certificate” to facilitate freedom of movement

The vaccination certificate and the rapid tests that are fast, efficient and cheaper are two tools that enable the necessary travel in upcoming summer, he added..

“Those who do not have a vaccination certificate will pass freely as we do not need to waste the specific resources in cases that do not pose a risk,” he stressed.

Minister Theoharis said that in the field of tourism he expects the upcoming summer to be better than summer 2020.

He noted that consumers’ habits have changed, that there is health uncertainty and that “no one is booking a trip 6 or 8 months before,” as in the past.

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5 comments

  1. Concerning how vaccines work, I would like to quote the WHO (https://www.who.int/…/vaccines-and-immunization-what-is…)
    “Quote start
    How does a vaccine work?
    Vaccines reduce risks of getting a disease by working with your body’s natural defenses to build protection. When you get a vaccine, your immune system responds. It:
    -Recognizes the invading germ, such as the virus or bacteria.
    -Produces antibodies. Antibodies are proteins produced naturally by the immune system to fight disease.
    -Remembers the disease and how to fight it. If you are then exposed to the germ in the future, your immune system can quickly destroy it before you become unwell.
    The vaccine is therefore a safe and clever way to produce an immune response in the body, without causing illness.
    Our immune systems are designed to remember. Once exposed to one or more doses of a vaccine, we typically remain protected against a disease for years, decades or even a lifetime. This is what makes vaccines so effective. Rather than treating a disease after it occurs, vaccines prevent us in the first instance from getting sick.
    Quote end”
    As clearly seen from the above quote, vaccines do not stop the virus from entering our system. What they do is help our bodies fight the virus once we contract the virus.
    In other words, even vaccinated persons can contract and carry the virus for an unspecified period of time, until their system destroys the virus.
    So, in the event that a vaccinated person contracts the virus and then travels or attends a public event or goes to a restaurant before his/her immune system recognizes the virus and defeats it, we risk spreading the virus. This in term means that testing should be MANDATORY FOR VACCINATED PERSONS AS WELL and the vaccination passport / certificate alone is not enough when travelling, attending a public event visiting a restaurant etc.

  2. thank you minister haris theoharis efcharistó !

  3. Dave van de Gevel

    Well said J Smith. Now that Greece, generally speaking, has got a handle on the virus, it would be reckless to create a situation ,as in 2020, where tourism became the primary source of infection, that replicates that source. Logistically, 100% testing of tourists might not be achievable but it certainly should be a target.
    On Zakynthos, I have seen the efforts made to contain the spread and I, for one, am extremely grateful for those efforts as we have a very low rate of infection.
    We have endured the hard rules of lock down for a very good reason. I applaud the Greeks for their stoicism.
    If only my native English public had behaved in the same way, they would be enjoying a different scenario to the one in which they now find themselves.

  4. see my comment over at the 101 year lady in care home who has just been vaccinated – people still have to be careful because even if you have been vaccinated you can still carry it and transmit it according to scientific research at this time.