As of the latest update by the Greek authorities yesterday evening, the total number of confirmed Covid-19 diagnosed cases in Greece is 2,834. Greek authorities have announced one new fatality from COVID-19 in the past 24 hours, bringing the total to 163. There are currently 22 patients intubated in intensive care units, while 90 patients have left the intensive care unit.
Greece is gradually lifting quarantine restrictions; organized beaches opened Saturday and churches opened Sunday. From today, residents are allowed to travel freely in the mainland and to and from the two largest islands _ Crete and Evia. Businesses such as malls and shopping centers, zoos and archaeological sites also reopen today as well as sports facilities for those over 13. In all cases, social distancing rules will be enforced and wearing masks is strongly recommended, as it is in public transport.
More than 200 archaeological sites are reopening on May 18 according the the Ministry of Culture.Archeological sites are the first category of cultural sites to return to normal operation, followed by summer cinemas on June 1, museums on June 15 and art events on July 15, as Culture Minister has announced.
They will operate from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. with all the necessary safety measures, according to the instructions of the National Public Health Organisation (EODY). These include keeping the distance of 1.5 meters, ensuring the maximum number of visitors per archeological site, marking safe routes, separating entry and exit while placing plexiglass divider panels if needed. There will also be special rules for sanitary facilities. The use of a protective mask is also recommended as well as the use of alcoholic antiseptic solution.
As part of the government’s effort to expedite the return to normalcy for businesses in Greece, the competent state health authorities have approved the opening of restaurants, bars and cafes on May 25. Based on the guidelines announced by the Development Ministry, the use of a protective mask for staff and consumers in public spaces is strongly recommended. The use of masks by staff and customers inside stores is mandatory.
The implementation of the third phase of the government’s plan to lift restrictions introduced to halt the spread of the coronavirus begin today, with travel allowed between different regions on mainland Greece and the first ferry services to Crete. Services to the other islands will begin, conditionally, on May 25.
Also from today, intercity buses and train services resume. Furthermore, there will be a gradual resumption on Monday of domestic flights, which had until now been operating in limited numbers. According to the safety rules, ferries will only be allowed to sail at no more than 50 percent passenger capacity, or 55 percent if cabins are available.
Before boarding, passengers will have their temperatures taken while they will also be required to complete a so-called “health status” questionnaire. Ferry passengers will also be obliged to keep a minimum distance of 1.5 meters between each other. Only one person will be allowed in each cabin, except in the case of disabled people and their helpers or families comprising spouses or first-degree relatives. In the latter case, cabin capacity can be up to four people. The use of masks by passengers and crew members is mandatory. There must also be an empty sea between each passenger.
Meanwhile authorities on Friday announced they were extending a ban on passenger flights to and from Italy, the United Kingdom, Spain and the Netherlands until May 31. The country was also extending a temporary ban on flights to and from Albania and North Macedonia until June 14. Furthermore, no flights will be allowed from Turkey until June 14. A temporary entry ban on non-EU citizens has been extended until May 31.