Greek authorities are mulling the introduction of a ‘health passport’ for tourists arriving in Greece in 2020, to serve as proof they are not suffering from COVID-19.
Greece’s Minister of Tourism, Harry Theocharis, said the passport could save the country’s flailing tourism sector and ensure a second wave of coronavirus does not emerge.
“The big wager for tourism this year will be the safe entry and exit of tourists into and out of Greece and for this reason a ‘health passport’ is being promoted,” Mr Theocharis said.
“But different countries have to agree on this ‘safe entry’ practice and I have urged the European Commission to have such health protocols in place.”
Mr Theocharis added that even with this passport, which must be obtained from a person’s country of origin, Greece’s tourism season will still be restricted to a three-month period.
“July, August and September will have to be the months which make up for lost time in the tourism sector,” he said.
“But if the situation develops positively, then we might also see an increased number of tourists in Greece during the ‘shoulder season’ months of October and November.”
It is still unclear at this point whether non-EU nationals will be allowed to visit Greece at all this summer, as a ban remains in place restricting their entry until mid-May.