Greece reopens borders to visitors from June 15 – but many travellers will need to be tested

Tourists who arrive from the UAE will be subject to self-quarantine even if they test negative for coronavirus

People visit the Pnyx Hill in Athens overlooking the ancient Acropolis on May 29, 2020 as Greece eases lockdown measures taken to curb the spread of the COVID-19 (the novel coronavirus). Greece announced a list of 29 countries deemed to fit the epidemiological profile , allowed to fly to Greece from 15 June as the country opens for tourists. / AFP / Louisa GOULIAMAKI
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Greece will allow visitors from more nations to enter the country from Monday, June 15, with rules varying according to where a traveller flew from.

International flights will be allowed to arrive in Athens and Thessaloniki in a bridge phase from Monday to Tuesday, June 15 to June 30.

The countries where visitors are permitted to travel from feature on a list compiled by the European Union Aviation Safety Agency and include the UAE, UK and US, the Greek Foreign Ministry said on April 30.

From Wednesday, July 1, the measure will be expanded to all Greek airports. On Friday, Greece’s Tourism Ministry said only visitors from 29 countries, including China but not the UAE, would be allowed to enter the country from Monday, June 15, with other nations to be added to the list from Wednesday, July 1.

But on Saturday, the Greek government clarified that it would also allow tourists from other countries to enter the country during the bridge phase, with different rules depending on the airport of origin.

If travellers arrive from an airport that is not on the Easa affected area list, then visitors are only subject to random tests upon arrival, the Foreign Ministry said.

But if the flight originates from an airport on the Easa affected area list, passengers will be tested for the virus when they arrive. If the result is negative, the passenger will self-quarantine for seven days and if it is positive, the traveller will be quarantined under supervision for 14 days. All UAE airports are on the Easa affected area list.

From July 1, all testing is random and additional restrictions regarding certain countries will be announced at a later date.

Greece will also reopen its land borders with Albania, Bulgaria and North Macedonia on June 15, the Foreign Ministry said. Visitors will be subject to random coronavirus tests when they arrive in the country. Travellers will be permitted to arrive in Greece by sea as of July 1.