The past few weeks Greece started gradually lifting the lockdown measures and the good news is that you can now travel by ferry to the Greek islands!
The Greek Ministry of Shipping has released a series of health and safety instructions for ferry trips in order to ensure that both travelers and ferry crew travel securely. On this page, you can find all the announced measures that apply for ferry trips until the 15th of June.
When can I start traveling by ferry in Greece after coronavirus?
Following about 2 months of lockdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic the country released ferry routes and transportations to all destinations across the country on Monday the 25th of May.
This page will be constantly updated following any new announcements or changes in regards to the measures and the indicated rules for ferry traveling.
Venetian castle in the port of Heraklio, Crete.
What are the new safety measures for ferry traveling?
From 25/5/2020 until 15/6/2020 the safety measures for travelers to Greek destinations are the following:
- Pre-boarding screening measures such as thermal screening to all passengers and the submission of a health status questionnaire by all passengers. The health status questionnaire can be downloaded from the Greek Maritime Ministry website or it can also be found at ferry agents.
- The use of face masks is obligatory for all passengers and members of the ferry crew. It is recommended to use a mask made of fabric.
- Maintainance of at least 1,5-meter distance by all passengers during boarding, disembarkation, and in all ferry spaces (indoors as well as outdoors).
- The passenger capacity of each ferry trip is calculated to 50% of the maximum capacity of the vessel. In the case that the ferry has cabins, the allowed passenger capacity can be up to 55% of the original maximum capacity.
- Bed cabins are allowed to be used by 1 passenger, except for families that can be up to 4 people in the same cabin or people with disabilities that can be accompanied by another person as well.
- Numbered seats are also available to book, however, a specific layout is applied in order for passengers to be seated sparsely in the space. Special markings will indicate where passengers are allowed to sit and which seats should remain empty.
- Passengers are expected to apply all indicated hygiene rules such as regular handwashing or use of hand sanitizer as well as being particularly careful when coughing or sneezing.
- All the above measures apply to the ferry routes from Greece to Italy as well.
What specific health and safety measures will be applied by ferry companies?
Apart from the limitations to the number of passengers allowed on each ferry trip, ferry companies have received strict instructions from the Ministry of Shipping to ensure safe traveling for all. Few of the measures that are applied are:
- All members of the ferry crew will be wearing a face mask while on board as well as during any interaction with the passengers.
- Printed brochures by the Greek Public Health Organisation (EODY) will be given to all passengers at entry, while all ferries should have screens with informative spots and audio messages playing during the ferry trip.
- Ferry crews will undergo special training in order to be able to assess the health questionnaire during the pre-boarding screening as well as deal with a suspected case of COVID-19 if needed.
- During the ferry trip members of the ferry crew will be doing regular checks on board to make sure that passengers follow the indicated safety measures.
- All ferries must provide hand sanitizers at the entrance as well as at several indoor and outdoor spaces. Ferries should also make sure they have the necessary medical supplies for passengers and crew needs.
- Ferry spaces (indoors and outdoors) must be regularly cleaned and sanitized.
- The ferry indoor spaces need to be well ventilated throughout the journey, also following the health and safety instructions for air conditioning.
- Restaurants, bars, cafeterias, and other passenger service points inside the ferry will operate under strict hygiene measures.
- In the case of a suspected case of COVID-19 amongst the passengers, there is going to be a procedure of isolating the case inside the ferry, tracking possible contacts, and providing health assistance according to the WHO guidelines.
Ferry arriving at the island of Donousa, Cyclades.