View U.S. Embassy Athens’ Most Recent Alerts
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The Department of State has issued a Global Level 4 Health Advisory advising U.S. citizens abroad who wish to return to do so immediately or be prepared to sustain themselves for an indefinite period overseas due to the global impact of COVID-19.
Flights to/from the United States: There are no direct flights between Greece and the United States at this time; they are not expected to resume until early June. See a list of possible international departures from Greece where you can connect to flights to the United States and summer flight announcements from carriers. Olympic Air operates daily flights from Thessaloniki to Athens. .
- Greek authorities confirmed 2,626 cases of COVID-19 within its borders as of May 3.
- Social distancing measures are in effect until further notice.
- The Greek government’s announced plan for re-opening (subject to change at any time):
- May 4: A mask or facial cover is mandatory in public transportation, taxis, elevators, hospitals, clinics and diagnostic centers. Masks are recommended in supermarkets, hair salons and other enclosed spaces. Violators may be fined 150 Euros. Movement certificates are no longer required; however, travel restrictions from one prefecture to another remain in force. Individual outdoor exercise is permitted while organized beaches remain closed. Certain shops are open including: small shops, bookstores, sports stores, garden shops, consumer goods stores, flower shops, electric appliance stores, optical shops, and – by appointment only – hairdressers.
- May 11: Remaining retail stores except for malls and department stores open.
- May 18: Travel restrictions within the country will be lifted, allowing movement from one prefecture to another, except for the islands.
- June 1: Shopping malls, department stores, and hotels that operate year round open. Restaurants and coffee shops operate only open-air premises.
- Early June: Opening of entertainment and sports venues (cinemas, theaters, entertainment centers, gyms, etc.), with social distancing and at 60% capacity. Interior spaces of restaurants and coffee shops open.
- Mid June: Seasonal tourist accommodations open, restoration of regular sea ferry traffic to the islands. This is when the Greek government expects to open the islands for tourism.
- Island access continues to be restricted to permanent residents and may remain so until mid-June. This page will be updated when additional information is available.
- Until May 18, for travel outside of Attica to the Athens Venizelos airport for your immediate return to the United States, we recommend that you write a personal affidavit on a piece of paper consisting of the following information: 1) your full name, 2) your current street address (or location, e.g., Thessaloniki), 3) Reason for moving and destination address. Include this text: “I am returning to my permanent residence in the United States.” 4) Date, time, your signature. This statement does NOT need to be notarized by the U.S. Embassy Athens.
- Air travel to/from Greece to Italy, Spain, Turkey, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, and Germany is suspended until May 15; other routes may be closed at any time. Ferry service from Italy to Greece is suspended.
- Land borders with Albania, North Macedonia, and Turkey are closed.
Entry and Exit Requirements:
- Non-EU citizens may not enter Greece until May 18. Exceptions include spouses or minor children of EU/Schengen nationals, long-term residents, members of government delegations, and passengers in transit. Check with your airline for document requirements as your marriage certificate or your children’s birth certificates may be required to board.
- We have no information beyond May 18 and cannot answer whether your summer trip will be able to proceed. When the Greek government makes an announcement, we will update this information.
- No particular documentation to enter/exit Greece is needed at this time.
- On March 16, Greek authorities announced a mandatory 14 day self-quarantine on all international arrivals. All international passengers must take a COVID-19 test upon arrival. If you do not agree to the test or to quarantine, you will not be permitted entry into Greece. See the airport’s webpage for details.
- If you are in Greece and were in any of the affected areas in the last 14 days and develop fever and/or respiratory symptoms such as shortness of breath or cough, stay indoors and immediately seek medical attention by contacting the National Public Health Organization at 1135.
- National Public Health Organization of Greece: https://eody.gov.gr/tag/en
- European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC): https://www.ecdc.europa.eu/en/geographical-distribution-2019-ncov-cases
Frequently Asked Questions:
- Does the Global Level 4 Health Advisory mean I should return to the United States? If you live in the United States, you should arrange for return home by commercial means or be prepared to remain abroad for an indefinite period. You should have a plan to depart Greece that does not rely on U.S. government assistance. Air France, Aegean Airlines, Qatar Airways, and Swiss Airways continue to offer flights departing Athens to other destinations with connections directly to the United States, but the situation could change. You should travel now.
- I have a reservation for a later time. Should I change it? Commercial flights remain available, but this could change at anytime. Check with a carrier directly to arrange or reschedule travel as soon as possible.
- Are U.S. citizens going to be evacuated from Greece? As noted in the Department of State Global Level 4 Health Advisory, if you live in the United States, you should arrange for immediate return home by commercial means or be prepared to remain abroad for an indefinite period. You should have a plan to depart Greece that does not rely on U.S. government assistance. There are no plans for evacuation flights from Greece.
- My 90 days of visa-free Schengen travel is almost up! What should I do? See the Embassy’s April 2 Alert.
- Am I eligible for the economic impact payment of $1,200? The IRS administers this program. See the IRS website for eligibility and disbursement details.
- I can’t remember or don’t have a social security number. What do I do? Contact the Federal Benefits Unit directly. The Embassy does not have access to social security records.
- Information for U.S. citizens returning from Greece
- Department of State Emergency Alert on COVID-19
- Centers for Disease Control: COVID-19 Information
- Centers for Disease Control: Information for Travelers
- CDC US Traveler Health Declaration (pdf) required to enter the United States
- Greece Country Specific Information
- What the Department of State Can and Can’t Do in a Crisis
- Presidential Proclamation Restricting Immigration for 60 Days
- Re-opening of USCIS Offices in the United States to Begin June 4
- U.S. Embassy Athens, Greece
- +30 210-721-2951