Ioannis Plakiotakis, Greece’s Minister for Shipping and Island Policy announced on Thursday that passenger ferries in the country will resume activity starting Monday, May 18, 2020. Access on board of vessels sailing to most Greek islands will be allowed solely for passengers traveling for work or to reunite with their families. Crete resumes passenger activities on May 18, while all other Greek islands will resume activities on May 25, 2020.
As the COVID-19 threat persists around the world, a series of measures for coastal shipping and maritime tourism will be in place to ensure the safety of passengers. The following rules apply from May 18 until June 15, 2020.
- The maximum number of passenger passengers allowed on board is 50% of the total number of passengers specified in the ship’s safety certificate, or at 55% if cabins are available.
- All passengers and crew will be tested – thermometry – and must fill in a special health status questionnaire before boarding the ship. The questionnaire will be available at the port authority and on a special website.
- Passengers must keep a distance of 1.5 meters during boarding, disembarkation, and in all areas of the ship.
- Only one person per cabin is allowed, except for families of up to four people (first-degree relatives), and disabled passengers with their companion.
- Passengers and crew must wear a mask (fabric is recommended).
- Social distancing rules apply for airplane-style seating too, with a special layout – for example, one seat occupied and one seat empty, adjacent, front and rear.
- Thermometry and the submission of a special health declaration are mandatory for passengers of international ferries on the lines Greece-Italy.
- Passengers will receive a printed brochure of EODY with information about these measures. Information will also be available in visible areas and via audio messages.
- All crews must undergo special training to comply with the new health measures.
- All passengers must respect the rules of personal hygiene. Ships must provide antiseptic stations in various areas.
- Ships should be cleaned and sanitized regularly.
- Ships must have in place proper ventilation and air conditioning.
- All suspicious incidents – a passenger suspected of infection with COVID-19 – must be treated according to special protocols (isolation in a special area, disembarkation at the next port that has the necessary capacity for its management, tracking of contacts, etc.),
- Special rules of operation apply for passenger service points (bars, restaurants, dining rooms).