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Update – 14/05/2021

As of the latest update by the Greek authorities, the total number of confirmed Covid-19 diagnosed cases in Greece is 371,693. 55 new deaths were reported raising the total number to 11,266. The number of patients treated in intensive care units is currently 683. 2,167 new cases were announced yesterday in Greece. 924 of the new cases were found in the Attica region and 169 new cases in the Thessaloniki region.

Germans who visit Greece this summer will not be required to quarantine upon their return to Germany, according to a cabinet decision on Wednesday. As long as travelers abide by some coronavirus regulations as set out by the German government, they will not be required to quarantine when they come back from Greece – unlike in the UK, where British tourists will still have to quarantine upon arrival back home.

Germany drops quarantine for almost 100 countries

The decision, announced on Wednesday, discontinued quarantine requirements for around 100 countries. The new regulations involved the assessment of foreign countries as to the level of coronavirus risk they pose to Germany by the federal government agency the Robert Koch Institute (RKI).

Areas of the world where the virus variants are still raging, including South Africa and India, are considered the “highest risk” at present, whereas countries such as the US and Greece are classified as “risk areas,” which is a lower risk level, according to the RKI.

Those entering Germany from “risk area” countries will not be required to quarantine as long as they can prove that they fall into one of three categories. In order to avoid quarantine, travelers need to show that they either have had a negative Covid-19 test, have been fully vaccinated, or have recovered from the coronavirus between 28 days and six months before travel.

Countries which are considered “high incidence risk areas,” such as France and the Netherlands will see returning travelers quarantining for 10 days on arrival back in Germany, which can be decreased to five days if the traveler takes a negative coronavirus test.

For those who have recovered from Covid-19 or are fully vaccinated, they do not need to quarantine at all.

For individuals returning to Germany from virus variant areas, a 14-day quarantine is required regardless of vaccination or recovery status.

German tourists return to Greece

The no-quarantine requirement upon return to Germany from Greece should be a very positive development for the Greek tourism sector. German tourists are vital to the Greek economy, and any encouragement for them to spend summer 2021 in Greece is beneficial.

Germans comprise the single largest market for tourism to Greece. Arrivals in the record-breaking year of 2019 were over 4 million, and revenue from those of that nationality added up to 2.96 billion euros. In 2020, despite the pandemic, Greece still received 1.526 million German tourists, who spent €1.13 billion while here.

With the opening of the tourism sector in Greece on Friday, German tourists are expected to flood into the country. The German travel company TUI has already planned a total of 120 flights to Greece by the end of May.

If the situation in Greece remains stable, Germany’s decision to end quarantine rules may be very profitable and beneficial to the vital tourism industry.

EU Vaccine passports

The Digital Green Certificate is aimed at allowing free movement within the European Union even during the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. They will be available in both physical and digital forms and will be free for all EU residents.

The certificate will be used to show whether the holder has been vaccinated against Covid-19, has received a negative test result or has recovered from it.

The vaccine passport will operate using unique QR codes in order to guarantee their authenticity.

These vaccine passports could help make travel between Germany and Greece even more convenient, allowing travelers to enjoy a stress-free coronavirus safe holiday.

Vaccination efforts in Greece initially left out legal permanent residents without a social security number (AMKA); but partly thanks to the social media campaign launched by Americans and others living in Greece, this oversight has now been rectified. On March 5, the Greek Parliament finally ratified legislation granting foreign residents a temporary AMKA number as a way to get around this growing problem.

This law rectifies a grave and dangerous oversight that affected thousands of legal residents, according to Rebecca Lieb, who had recently moved to Greece from New York City and who was instrumental in launching the campaign for vaccination to all.

Thousands of legal residents initially left in limbo

Without AMKA, there was no possibility of obtaining a vaccination appointment in Greece for the thousands of foreigners who were residing legally in the country. Golden Visa holders and their families, estimated at 70,000 people, including students, retirees, some diplomats, digital nomads, and other residents without work permits could not hope for a vaccination without the AMKA, which is tied to a work permit.

Even elderly Greek citizens who retired to Greece — but never worked in Greece — could not get an AMKA, nor can many resident EU citizens.

Other EU countries only required proof of residency. Greece initially tied vaccine eligibility to a work permit or work history, Lieb said.

In more detail, the 2,167 new cases detected per Regional Unit:

  • Attica 924
    • Eastern Attica 94
    • Northern Sector of Athens 111
    • West Attica 56
    • Western Sector of Athens 136
    • Central Sector of Athens 290
    • Southern Sector of Athens 114
    • Islands 4
    • Piraeus 119
  • Thessaloniki 169
  • Etoloakarnania 127
  • Andros 2
  • Argolida 10
  • Arcadia 15
  • Arta 1
  • Achaia 44
  • Boeotia 31
  • Grevena 3
  • Drama 15
  • Evros 18
  • Evia 35
  • Evrytania 1
  • Ilia 15
  • Imathia 27
  • Heraklion 52
  • Thassos 4
  • Thesprotia 2
  • Thira 1
  • Ikaria 1
  • Ioannina 62
  • Kavala 28
  • Kalymnos 36
  • Karditsa 9
  • Karpathos 2
  • Kastoria 12
  • Corfu 25
  • Kilkis 13
  • Kozani 23
  • Corinth 7
  • Kos 12
  • Laconia 2
  • Larissa 67
  • Lasithi 2
  • Lesvos 20
  • Lemnos 2
  • Magnesia 68
  • Messinia 1
  • Milos 1
  • Naxos 1
  • Xanthi 26
  • Paros 5
  • Pella 10
  • Pieria 10
  • Preveza 2
  • Rethymno 14
  • Rodopi 7
  • Rhodes 7
  • Samos 3
  • Serres 14
  • Trikala 20
  • Fthiotida 25
  • Florina 7
  • Fokida 6
  • Chalkidiki 11
  • Chania 22
  • Under investigation 77

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