Travellers to Greece 2021 – Info for Travel To and Within Greece

If you are visiting Greece during 2021 will need to be aware of travel restrictions and rules. Here’s all you need to know about travelling to Greece in 2021. 

International Travel to Greece 2021 

This article will no longer be updated. Here is all information about travelling to Greece in 2022.

If you are travelling to Greece in 2021, you will know that certain travel regulations apply. Many of these restrictions have been in place since early 2020.

You can normally find all new measures on our official Greek travel website. Unfortunately, sometimes they take a few days to update it.

Lockdown measures in Greece April 2021

Hello! I’m Vanessa, a travel writer from Athens. I’ve been keeping an eye on lockdown Greece and travel restrictions for Greece since March 2020. This article gives an overview of everything that travellers to Greece 2021 – 2022 should know, and was last updated on 30 December 2021. I am constantly revising this article with new Greece travel measures in 2021. You can bookmark it and check it before you travel to Greece. Please share this with people who will find it helpful!


Requirements for travel to Greece 2021 – Update

Latest update, 23 December 2021:

All travellers aged 5 and above, arriving to Greece from any of the permitted countries, will need to

– show a negative PCR test, taken within the last 72 hours, OR

– show a negative Rapid antigen test, taken within the last 24 hours.

This is regardless of whether passengers are vaccinated or not, and applies to everyone, irrespective of citizenship and way of entering Greece.

These measures are currently scheduled to remain in place until Monday 10 January 2022, 6 am. 

If you can understand Greek, you can watch this short video (15:22 onwards) where the measures are explained, or download this official document in Greek (Gazette 5951B/17-12-2021).

Who can travel to Greece in 2021?

Travellers are only allowed into Greece if they are permanent residents of the following countries:

  • EU and Schengen countries (includes Switzerland, Norway, Lichtenstein and Iceland)
  • United Kingdom
  • Australia
  • North Macedonia
  • United Arab Emirates
  • United States of America
  • Israel
  • Canada
  • Belarus
  • Bahrein
  • New Zealand
  • South Korea
  • Qatar
  • China
  • Kuwait
  • Ukraine
  • Russia*
  • Saudi Arabia
  • Serbia
  • Singapore
  • Bosnia – Herzegovina
  • Montenegro
  • Albania
  • Japan
  • Lebanon
  • Azerbaijan
  • Armenia
  • Jordan
  • Moldova
  • Brunei
  • San Marino
  • Andorra
  • Vatican city
  • Monaco
  • Turkey
  • Argentina
  • India
  • Uruguay
  • Sultanate of Oman
  • Chile
  • Mexico
  • Kosovo
  • Chinese Taipei

* Permanent residents of Russia will need to bring a negative PCR test (taken max 72 hours before arrival) or a negative Rapid test (taken max 48 hours before arrival). This is mandatory for all permanent residents of Russia, whether they have been vaccinated or not. 

The above is extended to spouses and families. Passengers travelling for essential reasons are also allowed to travel to Greece.

People arriving to Greece must complete the inbound PLF (Passenger Locator Form), which can be found at the official Greece travel website. The PLF can now be completed even on the same day of your flight.

The above list is due to be revised on 17 December.

Travel Greece 2021 - Restrictions and measures

What you need to know when you arrive to Greece

Rapid Covid-19 tests will be administered to selected travellers flying into Greece, at their point of entrance. 

Passengers aged 5 and above arriving from the following 16 countries, will need to take a Covid test upon arrival, unless they are vaccinated or have a valid (30 to 90 days*) recovery certificate . This is irrespective of the citizenship of the passengers:

  • Egypt
  • Albania
  • Argentina
  • Bulgaria
  • Brazil
  • Georgia
  • Cuba
  • United Arab Emirates
  • India
  • China
  • Libya
  • Morocco
  • North Macedonia
  • Pakistan
  • Russia
  • Turkey

In addition, permanent residents of Russia, Argentina, India, Uruguay, Sultanate of Oman, Mexico and Chile, will be subject to a PCR / rapid test upon arrival.

*Recovery certificates issued from 15.7.2021 to 31.10.2021 will be valid until 31.1.2022.

Any passengers who are found positive to the tests will subsequently take a PCR test. If the PCR rest shows a positive result, the passenger will have to self-isolate for 7 days (if they are vaccinated) or 10 days (if they are not vaccinated), in quarantine hotels provided by the Greek state, and further instructions will be given.

Always check the official website for more information, but do bear in mind that it’s not always up to date. In case of doubt, please get in touch with your embassy.

Close contacts

Close contacts (people travelling with a passenger that has been found positive to Covid-19), can choose to return to their country on the same or the next day, provided they have tested negative twice within the last 24 hours (PCR test or rapid antigen test). They will need to use an N95 mask on their return trip.

Close contacts with a valid vaccination / recovery certificate who decide to stay in Greece, will need to take a PCR test to enter the country.

Close contacts without a valid vaccination / recovery certificate who decide to stay in Greece, will be required to self-isolate for a period of 7 or 14 days, depending on their circumstances. Further instructions will be given.

Travellers to Greece 2021 - Aegean flight

Arriving in Greece from countries in South Africa

Additional restrictions are in place for passengers on flights from nine (9) African countries:

  • South Africa
  • Botswana
  • Namibia
  • Lesotho
  • Zimbabwe
  • Mozambique
  • Eswatini
  • Zambia
  • Malawi.

Greek nationals and other people arriving from the above countries are only allowed to travel to Greece for essential reasons, and regardless of their vaccination status. They must fulfill the following conditions:

  • a special entry permit to the Greek territory, issued by the competent Consular Authorities of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs
  • a negative PCR test, taken max 72 hours before their scheduled arrival time
  • a negative rapid test, taken on arrival
  • a 10-day quarantine period in a specially designated hotel, followed by another PCR test upon completion of the 10-day quarantine period.

This applies for all passengers aged 5 and above.

How to travel around Greece winter 2021 – 2022

Here is a breakdown of the regulations concerning all domestic travel around Greece by plane / train / ferry / bus, from 6 November onwards.

All passengers over 4 years old need to meet one of the following conditions:

  • Have completed the vaccination for COVID-19 at least 14 days before arrival, and can present a vaccination certificate issued by a public authority
  • Display a negative PCR test, taken up to 72 hours before the scheduled travel time
  • Display a negative rapid test, taken up to 48 hours before the scheduled travel time
  • Present a certificate, issued by a public authority, that they have contracted COVID-19, 30 to 90 days before travel. Recovery certificates issued from 15.7.2021 to 31.10.2021 will be valid until 31.1.2022.

Children from 4 to 17 years old can travel with any of the above documents, and also with a negative self-test, taken in the last 24 hours. These are available from Greek pharmacies at a cost of 5-8 euro, and the result needs to be registered in this paper form

Accepted languages for any of the above paperwork are Greek, English, French, German, Spanish, Italian or Russian.  The documents will be checked by the airline / ferry / train / bus employees during boarding, and they can be presented either in paper form or electronically.

In case of ferry travel, you will additionally need to use the travel forms provided by your ferry company (Passenger Health Declaration Form).

Here’s a website where you can book your tickets for the Greek islands > Ferryscanner.

How about restrictions within Greece?

As of 22 November 2021, people who have not been vaccinated / contracted Covid will not be allowed entrance to certain indoors venues in Greece.

Here is a summary of the Covid restrictions in Greece for 2022.

Where can I take a Covid test in Greece?

You can take a PCR or Rapid test at labs all around Greece. Rapid tests are also available at many pharmacies, along with self tests.

Here’s an article with a list of places where you can take a Covid test in Greece. Includes Athens, Santorini, Mykonos and other popular destinations.

Official sources for the above article

Ideas for travel to Greece 2021 – 2022!

If you are planning a trip to Greece, have a look at these articles:

18 thoughts on “Travellers to Greece 2021 – Info for Travel To and Within Greece”

    • Yes, if you are arriving until 19 April, and you will also have to go in a 7-day self-isolation. There is no solid official information regarding when the vaccination certificate will be adequate on its own, with no need for testing. I will be updating this article with all news, so feel free to come back to it now and then. As always, check the official travel website.

  1. Hi Vanessa
    Unreal information thank you so much!
    Two questions:
    Do you have to get paper form certified before you leave your home or do you just carry it with you?
    Also can I get train from Athens to Thessaloniki? For volunteering reasons

    • Thank you for your kind words! The situation is unreal indeed! I hope that in a year’s time we will all be laughing at this!
      The paper form for reasons 1-6 is very easy, you can just print it off and just carry it with you. If you don’t have a printer you can just write your details on a piece of paper. However, if you are talking about a paper form from an employer, this needs to be certified by the employer.
      Now in terms of volunteering in another region, I am not sure, it’s best to discuss this with the organization that you will volunteer for, there are no explicit rules as far as I know. Just so you know, the current speculation is that intra-regional travel will reopen on the day tourism restarts, 14th May, but we are all waiting to see… hope this helps!

  2. Hi Vanessa,
    Thanks for the infromation, it is really wonderful to find everything in one place. I have a question, we are arriving on 9th May sunday.
    So, movement is restricted until 10th May. Does that mean even the tourist have to send code and go out on 9th? I have heard that the validity is only for 3hrs. Is this for only Greek citizens or for tourists also. Can can we visit the Restaurants?
    Thanks for your reply!

    • Hi Sradha, thanks for your question. Yes, inter-regional movement is unfortunately not allowed until at least the 10th, and it is very likely that it will be extended to the 14th, we should know tomorrow evening.
      Now, to move around, you won’t be able to send an sms unless you have a Greek SIM card. Instead, you can carry this paper with you. These days we use code 6 for exercise, archaeological sites, restaurants, cafes and most of the activities you will be doing. If you don’t have access to a printer, just write your details on a piece of paper, and use code 6.
      Now, for shopping, we use another sms (no paper form). However, for most stores, they would need to be able to send you an sms. I’ve described this in this article.
      We don’t know yet when the sms will stop – hopefully next week.
      With all that said, in all honesty, I can’t see that you would ever be checked – I’ve only been checked once since November. But it doesn’t hurt to have the paper form with you. And there is no time limitation on anything, apart from the curfew at 23.00. Hope it helps! Enjoy your vacation!

  3. Thanks for the updates from today 14 May and this article.

    We are hoping to visit Lefkada and the islands in June – we will be sailing. We have everything organised for our travel from Spain to Greece, via Germany but it’s organising the test needed to travel home again (to Spain via Germany) at the beginning of July that is proving difficult. We need to be able to book PCR tests for the results to be back quickly within 48 hours for Germany and 72 hours for Spain. Flights are on Sunday 4th July, so need testing on Friday 2nd July in the afternoon………..this does limit us somewhat, especially if labs do not work at the weekend.

    • Here in Athens, some labs work on weekends. As the islands are tourist destinations I am sure that you will be fine, however it would be advisable to pre-book your PCR-test appointment well in advance since you know your dates. I have found that Googlemaps works ok when you use the words “PCR test” here in Athens, but haven’t checked it for other areas yet. Planning to write an article on where to get tested in Greece at some point in the future!

  4. Hello Vanessa,
    I’ll be arriving to Athens on may 20th or after from lebanon,
    I have a valid greek residency, but i just wanted to know if i should quarantine for a week, i had caught covid tho 6 months ago.
    Thanks for all the wonderful info you always share.

    • Hello Mustapha, I hope you have recovered ok! Please check, my understanding is that you will have to self-isolate as Lebanon is still not in the list of the permitted countries. You could also check with the embassy. Have a nice trip 🙂

  5. Hi
    We are permanent US residents, US passports and fully vaccinated in the US. Traveling from Egypt to Greece on June 1. Will we be allowed entry without quarantine? Alternatively, do you think we would be allowed entry with quarantine/self isolation? If so, how does that work? What are the guidelines on self isolation? I can’t find anything clear. Any information you have would be appreciated. We are going to celebrate the marriage of our daughter and really need to get there!!

    • First of all, congrats on your daughter’s marriage! Based on the current restrictions (that will be updated around May 24th), my understanding is that you would be allowed in without self-isolation. However, if I were you, I would prefer to take this up with the US Embassy, for official confirmation. They now seem to update more quickly, so please have a look there as well. Have a safe trip and enjoy!

      • Thanks for the suggestion. I will check with the US Embassy. I’m just worried about the flying in from Egypt part since Egypt is not on the list of accepted countries.

  6. Hi Vanessa,
    I’m a Dutch citizen travelling from Indonesia to Greece, is this allowed at the moment and do I have to quarantaine? I’m not vaccinated yet, regards Ben

    • Hi Ben… according to our official travel website, Indonesia does not belong to the permitted countries, but I’ve read about people from non-permitted countries who have travelled here nevertheless. Please ask your embassy for official information. Good luck!


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