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“No discrimination for tourists without vaccination,” says Greece’s Tourism Minister

Greece is determined to open to tourism on May 14, Tourism Minister Haris Theoharis told the Parlaiment on Monday. “Of course, we will open on May 14. We are opening safely despite the danger,” he said adding that the country’s “plan is comprehensive for the opening of tourism. It is careful, it is balanced and it allows safe tourism throughout the country.”

He said that there was “a 5-point and defense plan” and stated as conditions either vaccination or negative PCR test and sampling at arrival with the EVA system.

“We identify the people who are positive at the border, with the isolation hotels, so that we can isolate them, with the vaccination of the workers in tourism, which will be done as soon as the vaccination of our health-vulnerable fellow citizens is completed” Theoharis underlined.

Regarding covid-free areas the minister said that “the whole country is safe and we are not here to say one island is safe and another one is not. and so to have internal competition.”

Theoharis said that on May 14, Greece will open all the land crossings, “so that we do not have the difficulties we had last year.”

Covid-19 tests at the airports will be faster and “we will not need 24 hours later to look for and pick up the tourists from the hotels and take them to isolation hotels. We will be able to isolate them directly at the airports.” He said that a PCR test will follow the Rapid test at the airport if the later turns positive.

Respectively, if someone comes with his car to the road border, he will be able to return to his homeland if someone from the family was found positive.”

Last week and in interviews to several German media, Minister Theoharis said, among others, that “there will be no discrimination against those tourists who have not been vaccinated . All people will be allowed to travel.”

He stressed that “every visitor will have to follow the same protection rules as the Greeks. If there is a mask obligation for Greek citizens, the same will apply to everyone, whether they have been vaccinated or not.”

He reiterated that “for Europe and some markets [countries]  with a high percentage of vaccinated population, we want to open as early as mid-April.”

Greece plans to proceed with the vaccination of workers at the tourism sector “immediately after the elderly and the high-risk patients,” Theoharis said.

According to the government priority vaccination plan, this could start end May or early June.

More information on current (stand: April 6, 2021) travel restrictions in Greece during the pandemic here.

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9 comments

  1. Regarding covid-free areas the minister said that “the whole country is safe and we are not here to say one island is safe and another one is not. and so to have internal competition.”

    The whole country is safe? What’s with this shopping crap then?

  2. Rhonda L Costambeys

    I totally agree with you.. here on Crete we have German tourists going around like there is no lockdown..one passenger on a flight a few days ago was tested positive .. yesterdays news by the way…did any of the other passengers on that flight get tested or were vaccinated before arrival I ask.. που ζούμε… !!!!!

    • Were the other passengers quarantined? You say they are goingcaround like there is no lockdown – i thought they were supposed to be confined to the hotel they arexstaying at and not allowed to leave?

  3. If you are the minister for tourism then Greece is totally safe. If you are an epidemiologist it is a catastrophe. How do we reconcile these views? The epidemiologist is forced to spend his time analysing the data while the minister for tourism doesn’t need to look at the figures at all.

  4. Pannonian sailor

    With 4300+ infected and 5.5% of vaccinated you are going open for tourism?
    Brave!

  5. Last week and in interviews to several German media, Minister Theoharis said, among others, that “there will be no discrimination against those tourists who have not been vaccinated . All people will be allowed to travel.”
    Quote.
    I do hope this is an interpretation glitch because if not then I am lost for words ! Do they actually pay this idiot for coming out with comments like this ? if so he should give the money back. Looks like I will be spending the summer locked in my house !

  6. Giota_asteria2000

    more and more I am getting the idea of… that it is a big “truman show”! Greece is opening for tourism…. fine. the highest rates of infections at the moment since the start of the “pandemic”…. ok… when will Theoharis open the country? mid April? 14. May? Eastern for greeks… no way. so to be honest to all the people who a really ill and died until now. this is a big fake show. do we have the biggest pandemic in the last decades? or is it all constructed? I think yes… or why does the minister said: “the whole country is safe!” Greeks wake up! there is something trelos in the air!

  7. “We are opening safely”…… SAFELY!?……”Despite the danger” …he says??…… How in hells name does that work? Plus already one positive case detected in the early arrivals. Only a politician could issue such crap and think the “ignorant” population will believe that rubbish. Verbal diarrhea!

  8. Well, I suppose now we know that this time the minister’s “plans” to open restaurants and bars after Easter will actually happen because it coincides with the arrival of tourists. Koulis’ government hasn’t been able to coordinate and ministers were giving conflicting information regularly but when it comes to tourist season, they’re certainly all on the same page. I’m sure when the tourists leave this fall, the residents will be under another 6 month lockdown…you know, for their protection. Ellhnes, fyge apo thn Ellada.