Κυριακή, 24 Ιανουαρίου 2021

TUI extends program to Greece until November and sees strong demand for 2021

 

The tour operator’s leadership believes that Greece handled the pandemic exceptionally

 TUI is extending its program in Greece until November, in spite of the global effects of the Covid-19 pandemic “betting” on the extension of the season.

“By the end of November we can reach the target of 1 million travelers that TUI will bring to Greece, of which 20% is estimated in the autumn period until November,” Sebastian Ebel, member of the executive board of TUI, responsible for the sectors of Hotels, Cruise and Group Activities said yesterday in an online update on the group’s plans in Greece.

Thomas Ellerbeck, a member of the Executive Committee of TUI, pointed out that Greece is “this year the number 1 destination for the group, a fact which is due to both the TUI team itself and the attitude of the Greek government and the Greek hoteliers in the part of dealing with the pandemic, for which it could be a model for other destinations in Europe “.

Ebel announced that TUI is extending the season until November for the first time and “this year especially the weather is very good. To turn Greece from a destination of six months into one of 9 months is very important and we believe that at the moment there is an opportunity here. Customers who visited Greece this year, came back very satisfied and this is the best marketing campaign that there can be, especially in a season as special as this year. This fact vindicates our group for the “investment” in the country in the fall both with the addition of air connections and with partnerships with hoteliers who are keeping their units open for this period.”

(source: tornos)

Austria deems Greece a Covid-19 safe country

 

The Foreign Ministry issued a travel warning

Greece is among the ten countries Austria has excluded from its Covid-19 pandemic ban. In a travel warning issued by the country’s Foreign Ministry, Greece is considered safe from the pandemic.

According to the statement, “due to the spread of the coronavirus, travel warnings apply to almost all countries of the world, excluding Australia, Vatican, Greece, Iceland, Japan, New Zealand, Norway, South Korea, Singapore, and Finland. However, the urgent recommendation to avoid all unnecessary travel is still maintained, even in these countries,” the statement read.

From today, 15 January 2021, the electronic registration of those entering Austria via the relevant form for Covid-19 becomes mandatory for everyone (even Austrians).

For persons in areas subject to a travel warning due to the Covid-19 pandemic, – and therefore excluding travelers from Greece – the obligation to enter directly into the country when entering Austria is still in force. Quarantine house for ten days. Early termination of quarantine is possible, with a negative PCR test or antigen test, no earlier than the fifth day after entering the country.

(source:proto thema)

Crete is the most popular holiday destination for Brits


 Holiday package rates fell substantially compared to last year

Crete is the most popular holiday destination for this year’s tourist season for the Brits, according to online searches made in January by the TravelSupermarket comparison site.

On the same site, an interesting finding is that rates for holiday packages in the most popular destinations, which are currently offered in the British market, were down by up to 54% compared to January 2020.

According to TravelSupermarket, the most popular search for a seven-night vacation between May and October concerned Crete, with the average price for this package being 10% cheaper than last year.

Santorini (8th place) was also among the top 10 most popular destinations from Greece.

Tenerife, the second most popular destination, saw prices fall 13%, while package prices to Mallorca, the third most popular destination, fell 9%.

The biggest drop in holiday package prices is in Algarve, approaching 54%. TravelSupermarket estimates that this big drop may be due to declining demand following news reports that a new coronavirus strain first found in Brazil is affecting travel to Portugal.

(source tornosnews.gr)

‘The Mirror’ Adds Greek Islands to Travel Bucket List for 2021

 


The Greek islands are among the destinations included on the 2021 travel bucket list of British national daily The Mirror.

Published on the newspaper’s website, the list consists of 12 amazing destinations and targets travelers seeking for escapism or future adventures.

“Travel isn’t exactly on the cards at the moment (thanks, Covid). However, while 2020 saw holidays cancelled and global restrictions imposed, the news of vaccines being rolled out is offering up a glimmer of hope for getaways in 2021,”  Digital Travel Editor Julie Delahaye says.

Costa Rica tops the list with Norway and Japan in the second and third place respectively, while the Greek islands are in the ninth position.

“The Greek Islands offer up some very different holiday experiences – which is often why they’re so popular with visitors who keep coming back,” Delahaye adds.

She reffers to Rhodes and Crete as the ideal destinations for family vacations due to their all-inclusive resorts and fun activities.

Delahaye also suggests Corfu for a relaxed getaway; Mykonos for its party crowd, and Santorini as a romantic getaway.

 The Mirror’s Travel Bucket List for 2021 includes the following destinations:

1. Costa Rica
2. Norway
3. Japan
4. Malta
5. Canada
6. Italy
7. South Africa
8. Jamaica
9. Greek Islands
10. Thailand
11. Peru
12. Canary Islands


Traveling to Greece? All You Need to Know

 

Athens’ Eleftherios Venizelos International Airport. Credit: Wikimedia commons

Traveling to Greece directives calling for a seven-day quarantine of airline passengers from abroad and a restriction of international flights have been extended until Monday, February 8, 2021.

Also, the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) on Friday announced a new directive (Notam) concerning Israel, without the weekly limit of 10,000 passengers provided by the previous aviation directive for this country.

As far as international itineraries are concerned, with the aim of protecting passengers and citizens, the following international air traffic directives are extended and valid from Friday at dawn until Monday, February 8, 2021 at midnight.

Passenger Locator Form

Seven-day quarantines are now mandatory for all arrivals from abroad.

All passengers entering Greece up until February 8 at midnight, from any foreign country, including the member states of the European Union, are subject to a mandatory precautionary confinement to their home or the temporary residence they have declared in their Passenger Locator Form (PLF) for seven days, unless their stay in Greece is for a shorter period, in which case the temporary restriction is valid until the time of their departure.

Also, foreign passengers may be subjected to a rapid test upon arrival, based on the procedure provided by the PLF. If a passenger tests positive, the mandatory period of quarantine is extended to 14 days.

For arrivals from the United Kingdom, in addition to a seven-day quarantine and rapid test, they must also provide a new negative PCR test at the end of the seven-day quarantine in order for this to be lifted. Rapid tests will be carried out on all passengers on flights from the UK upon arrival.

International arrivals are only permitted to enter if they can display a negative test taken in the previous 72 hours.

The Notam stipulates that all passengers on international flights can only enter Greece if they have a negative PCR test and may also be subjected to a random rapid test upon arrival, based on the PLF.

The aviation directive extends the requirement for mandatory completion of the PLF at the electronic address https://travel.gov.gr/ by all passengers on international flights to Greece.

Filling in a PLF is also mandatory for passengers on foreign flights who are permanent residents of Greece and depart from the airports of Greece.

Some travelers completely excluded; others have limits on numbers allowed in

The suspension of flights between Greece and Turkey and between Greece and the region of Catalonia in Spain has been extended.

All flights to and from Greece from Albania and North Macedonia, according to the new extension of the Notam, will be operated only at AIA, Athens’ Eleftherios Venizelos International Airport.

The aviation directive extends a ban on the entry of non-European citizens (Non-EU citizens) into Greece.

Israel and Russia were added to the exempted countries in the aviation directive, bringing the total of 11 countries exempted from the entry ban to Greece to 11.

The notam does not apply to residents of the following 11 countries: the United Kingdom, Singapore, Australia, Japan, New Zealand, Rwanda, South Korea, Thailand, the United Arab Emirates, the Russian Federation and Israel.

Especially for Russia (permanent residents) the following restrictions remain: Arrivals only at the airports of Athens, Thessaloniki and Heraklion and a maximum entry limit of 500 passenger arrivals per week.

Exceptions to foreign flight aviation directives under previous notams will also apply for those extended until February 8.

(Source: AMNA , Greek Reporter)

Prime Minister: “Brand Greece” must be refreshed this year

 

Mitsotakis believes that the tourism sector is not the only one that will benefit from refocusing on all Greece has to offer

 Greek PM Mitsotakis believes that “Brand Greece” must be refreshed once again this year, after the worst of the pandemic is over, letting the world know once again that it is ready to “hit play again” as the nation not only ramps up for another tourist season but creates an economic climate for new development and investment as well, according to greekreporter.com.

He believes that the tourism sector is not the only one that will benefit from refocusing on all Greece has to offer — now that there is a new economic outlook, he hopes to attract even more business development than he has in the recent past and to entice more Greeks abroad to come back to the land of their birth to work and live.

“Sunny ambitions”

After years in what the magazine Monocle called “years in the geopolitical wilderness” Prime Minister Mitsotakis is “hitting play on his nation’s sunny ambitions” in a bid to remind the world what “Brand Greece” means — and to expand that meaning.

The story recounted that after winning the election in July of 2019, Mitsotakis immediately started to create a more business-friendly environment in the country, after years of austerity and economic difficulty. However, just as the economic reality was markedly improving in the country, the pandemic broke out and the Greek leader was faced with helping his nation navigate the uncharted waters of a global health crisis.

The nation is strongly inviting “Digital Nomads,” those who can work anywhere in the world via computer, to settle in Greece and has also instituted a 7% income tax rate for retirees — from anywhere in the world — to come and live in the country.

“Mitsotakis has hit play on a new image and role for Greece that is seeing the return of a highly talented diaspora, a rapid rise in foreign direct investment, and tax incentives given to encourage an increasingly vibrant start-up scene” the writers say.

This indicates  the Prime Minister’s “renewed determination for Greece to play a pivotal diplomatic, military and economic role in the Eastern Mediterranean, where relations with Turkey are tense because of clashing claims over maritime borders and ‘exclusive economic zones.”

The Monocle story quotes Mitsotakis as pointing out: “For a country that came out of ten years of economic hardship with a healthcare system that had come under a lot of strain, we’ve done remarkably well. I’m a big believer in trust. And trust between people and the political elite had been shattered during the (financial crisis of 2008 and its aftermath).

“We’re rebuilding this trust, step by step,” he explains. “There’s a general feeling that Greece has turned the corner, a new sense of national confidence – that’s very much exhibited in our diaspora.

“Country moving in the right direction”

“These are highly talented people who left the country during the crisis. The reason they’re returning – or contemplating returning – isn’t just to do with the fact that they’re offered more professional opportunities; it also has to do with a general sense that the country is moving in the right direction.”

The move adroitly taps into the current professional realities of many across the world due to Covid-19. Those who once worked in cubicles or desks in sprawling offices have now been working from home for the better part of the last year.

For some, this shift to remote work has proven to be welcome, improving their professional and personal lives. Others are starving for exploration and adventure because of Covid-19 restrictions, and see the change as the ideal opportunity to work and travel once it’s safe.

Large corporations around the globe have found worker productivity and satisfaction to be increased now that many have the freedom to work wherever their employees want, and following their own schedules.

Tech giants moving into Greece

Some firms, like Google, have even suggested that they would continue this work-from-home model for the majority of their staff even after the pandemic is long over.

The country has started by reducing taxes by 50% for those who decide to make Greece their home base. Furthermore, Greece has promised significant tax benefits to court Greeks living abroad, lost to the brain drain during the financial crisis, to return to the country.

This model has proven to be rather effective, bringing in a number of highly-qualified, creative workers already working remotely to Greece, drawn to the country’s vibrant culture and stunning natural landscapes.

Tech and pharmaceutical giants, such as Microsoft and Pfizer, have even commenced major operations in the country, which was once mired in an immense economic recession.

Ginger – banana energy smoothie

 By: Λάμπρος Βακιάρος | | Liqueurs-Smoothies, Mediterranean Cooking

Creamy and sweet, this smoothie is the perfect, on-the-go energizing drink. It’s loaded with nutrients and is beyond delicious. Add your favorite superfood if you wish.

Serves: 2 Prep. time: 15′ Ready in: 15′

Ingredients
2 medium ripe bananas
1 small red apple
1 small piece fresh ginger, grated
1 cup fresh orange juice
½ cup almond milk
ice

Method
Step 1
Peel fruit and cut in pieces.

Step 2
Whizz all ingredients with some ice in your blender until smooth.

Step 3
Serve with extra ice if you wish.