The Greek government is proceeding with gradually lifting the measures taken to halt the spread of Covid-19 throughout Greece and guiding the country to its normal state according to the official website of Greek tourism, Visit Greece.
The government announced its two-month plan in reopening Greece’s market in several stages. Greece’s return to normalcy will take place starting from May 4 with the opening of some shops and services, such as bookstores, electronic stores, and hair salons.
More shops and services will open on May 11, continue to open on May 18, and then again on June 1. The exact dates for the following stages will be announced after May 18.
The government is also anticipated to announce further information regarding the reopening of restaurants, leisure facilities, hotels, swimming pools, and beaches in the coming days.
The US Embassy & Consulate in Greece explains further that the reopening of entertainment and sports venues, such as movie theatres, gyms, and entertainment centers, will start in early June, but only at 60% capacity and with appropriate social distancing measures in place. Interior areas of restaurants and coffee shops will also begin opening in early June.
In addition, it was announced that large gatherings, such as festivals, concerts, or sporting events with spectators, will most likely not be allowed during the summer months.
By mid-June, seasonal tourist accommodations, as well as year-round hotels in Greece, will be permitted to reopen, as will the “restoration of regular sea ferry traffic to the islands.”
Tourism is 12% of the economy in Greece, according to Forbes. There are plans in the works to invite tourists to the country in mid-June, and Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis told CNN that he wants to have everything up and running by July 1.
“Ideally we want more high-end tourists where we can actually respect social distancing,” Mitsotakis told CNN, adding that there would be COVID-19 testing at airports and temperature checks at hotels and local businesses.
Greece, which has a population of 10.72 million, has seen 2,632 cases of COVID-19, a much lower count than other countries, particularly some in nearby western Europe. The country has had 146 deaths from the virus, making a per capita death rate of 13.61 per million people.
For a full list of the sequential order of Greece’s easing of coronavirus-prevention measures, authorities have created a document entitled, “A bridge of safety toward a new daily reality.”