It is no secret that one of the most unpleasant consequences of the coronavirus pandemic, in addition to medical ones, has become severe restrictions on movement in localities, both within countries, and abroad. In fact, in 2020, Russian citizens could only rest in Turkey, Egypt and Tanzania - all other countries were closed to our tourists.
Now the situation is changing at least a little. Judging by the latest reports, Greece is ready for our tourists. However, it is already open, although not completely. The Moscow News Telegram channel reports that the Greeks have extended their entry permit for up to 4 thousand Russians a week until April 19. A little, but already something, especially since this quota has not yet been selected - the season has not yet come. When entering the country, a negative coronavirus test result is required.
Journalist Georgy Krasnikov decided to try on himself how permeable the countries of Europe are today, and described his impressions here. Among other things, he listed three completely legal ways for a Russian citizen to enter Europe, if he has a regular tourist Schengen visa (type C).
1. Transit through Croatia, which opened for Russians at the end of summer 2020. From there you could fly anywhere, even to Madrid, even to Brussels, there are no strict checks within the European Union. But now it has become more difficult: Croatia has stopped letting in itself, but it allows transit for 12 hours (they are considered strictly!). At the same time, you can leave in transit only by land. Those. you arrive in Croatia, then go to Slovenia by train or bus, and from there the curve of the European dream will lead you.
2. Arrival in Greece, this is the only country that allows for tourist purposes. Moreover, it even seems to issue visas! If you don't have Schengen, this is the only way to get it right now. To enter, you must fill out a special PLF form and take a PCR test.
3. Transit through Austria, which permits transit if you have tickets to a third country you can enter. For example, the most popular way is to buy a bus to Belgrade (Serbia). It is also possible to take a surrender ticket to Athens from Vienna. At the entrance, border guards look closely at the fact of transit. And recently, an Austrian policeman (!) Began to check documents and closely interrogate passengers even before flying to Sheremetyevo at the check-in counters! Without his goodness, they don't get on a plane. But once you enter the country, you will no longer be controlled by anyone and will be able to go to all 4 directions.
If you are in one of the European spaces, then it is already a little easier to move further. But be careful! Each country now has its own rules of entry and stay in it. It is recommended that you study them carefully. And also to monitor whether something has changed constantly - the situation is changing both in one direction and in the other direction constantly..."
And the journalist Maxim Klimenko, who lives in Greece, published an even more optimistic post:
“We will open on May 14th and we will open safely despite the dangers of a pandemic”, Greek Tourism Minister Haris Theocharis said in a speech in parliament today. In particular, he said: "We will open on May 14 and open safely, despite the danger". According to him, "so that this year we can safely receive tourists from abroad, we are implementing a plan that includes five lines of defense".
Here is a list of them:
Conditions and related certifications prior to travelers arriving in Greece - either vaccinated or negative.
Activation of the very successful EVA spot checks system, for which we have received international recognition, in order to identify positive cases at the border.
Quarantine hotels so that we can isolate any cases.
Vaccination of workers, which will begin as soon as the vaccination of our fellow citizens, vulnerable to health, is completed.
Strict adherence to health protocols.
Regarding the islands "free of COVID", the Minister of Tourism noted that "the whole country is safe", adding that "there should be no internal competition between destinations".