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Greece's new Covid-19 measures for Holiday Season

Aiming to curb the spread of the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic following the emergence of the Omicron variant in the country, the Greek government announced five new measures on Thursday (23/12).

Greek Health Minister, Thanos Plevris, stated that Greece would take additional measures based on the recommendations of its health experts committee in order to reduce the risk of an increase in Covid-19 cases during the holidays.

The following new measures will be in force from 6 am on Friday (24/12) and run until January 2:

  • all holiday events announced by municipal authorities in open spaces (such as festivals) will be canceled
  • the mandatory wearing of masks both indoors and outdoors (the measure also concerns closed spaces such as restaurants and gyms)
  • the mandatory wearing of increased protection masks (KN95) or double masks in supermarkets and public transport
  • all citizens should conduct a self-test prior to attending social events or gatherings (government recommendation).

Inbound travelers ‘strongly recommended’ to test after arrival 

Plevris also said that travelers entering Greece should perform a rapid or PCR test for Covid-19 on the second and fourth day after their arrival. 

This is an addition to existing rules that require all inbound travelers, regardless of vaccination status, to present a negative PCR or rapid antigen test result taken before entering the country. (PCR tests should be performed within 72 hours before travel and rapid antigen tests should be performed within 24 hours before travel.)

New measures after Jan 3

Greece’s health expert committee will convene again on December 27 to re-evaluate the epidemiological data and examine the potential of implementing a new set of measures after January 3.

These may include restrictions on opening hours for F&B and entertainment venues; restrictions on sports events and non-essential activities; and increased teleworking.