To boost its economy, Greece is set to open a border for tourist to visit for the holidays. Greek tourism minister Harry Theocharis said yesterday that the country will be opened up to international tourists who are vaccinated, have antibodies or can show proof of a negative test.
Greece : reopen borders from mid-May
He revealed the demand in the UK for holidays in Greece is ‘already picking up because there’s a lot more optimism with the way the vaccination programme is progressing’. However, all tourists will be subject to random Covid-19 testing upon entry.
The minister said the details are still being finalised but tourists who have had their first jab will be permitted to enter restriction-free, then children will need to have a negative test.
If infection rates are at a low level, the country plans to reopen its borders three days before May 17. It is the earliest possible date Boris Johnson said Brits can travel abroad. The UK Government is currently evaluating overseas travel with the Global Travel Taskforce due to present its suggestions to the Prime Minister on April 12.
Greek authorities said they will prioritise people who work in the hospitality industry to get the vaccination. Once the most vulnerable have received their jab and will make the frequent testing of employees mandatory.
Mr Theocharis emphasised how the country had been able to open tourism safely’ last year when it welcomed six million visitors before another wave of the virus forced it to shut again. He added the country plans to enlarge its summer season further into autumn this year to give the economy another boost.
Simpson Travel, which specialises in Mediterranean holidays, said around 90% of villas on some Greek islands have already sold out for the summer. In 2019, more than 3.5 million British holidaymakers travelled to Greece and made it become the second-highest number of international visitors after Germany.