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Travelling to Greece during financial crisis

Travel Forums Europe Travelling to Greece during financial crisis

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1. Posted by travellingtonyc (Budding Member 2 posts) 1y

travellingtonyc has indicated that this thread is about Greece

Hi, I'm travelling to Greece next. Should I be concerned about the financial crisis? I've heard that emergency services may not be operating fully and that there are public strikes etc.

I will ensure I take cash rather than card but does anyone have any other tips to be safe?


2. Posted by Gurt (Full Member 62 posts) 1y

Avoid the bigger cities, esp. Athens. Don't worry, people will be glad that you come and spend some money.
Islands are safe!

3. Posted by Gpk2010 (Budding Member 13 posts) 1y

As long as you have credit cards issued outside of Greece they will work. Cash, of course, works also. Things are quiet right now, but it feels like the quiet before the storm. All the touristy areas are relatively safe, even in Athens. Have a "plan B" in case your boat is not sailing because of a strike.
Emergency services work as good (or as poorly) as always. Weather is HOT and the sea is warm.

4. Posted by mariha2912 (Full Member 115 posts) 1y

For the time been things are more or less business as usual from a tourist point of view, but it is recommended to bring some cash -euro- in advance for your out conveniance. Credit and debit/cash cards connected to a foreign bank account work as usual but there might be some ATMs drained here and there, taking a few hours to refill. Not very convenient if you need cash immediately. Furthermore, I do not know how familiar you are with Greece and where are you coming from or where exactly you plan to go, but note that cash is a much more common/prefered method of payment in Greece than credit cards. Small hotels, rooms to let, taverns, corner shops or even archeological sites and museums do not even have a credit card machine.
Be aware that since 10 years ago or so, pick pocketing, an unknown term till then, appeared and keep increasing on Athens metro and places where tourists/crowds frequent. So take normal precautions you would take in any large city for this.

There are no strikes announced right now as far as I know.

[ Edit: Edited on 09-Jul-2015, at 03:14 by mariha2912 ]

5. Posted by robmer (Full Member 105 posts) 1y

You should be fine if you have credit cards against banks from another country. Similar debit cards would work as well also. As a tourist, they should welcome you because you are spending money in their country. Bring some cash as well because they do have a limit on the amount that you can draw in an ATM machine (I believe that is is 60 euros per day). Try not to get too low on cash. If you do, you can always use your credit card. I don't carry a lot of cash even when I am home anymore; I use my credit card or debit card more often.

6. Posted by mariha2912 (Full Member 115 posts) 1y

There is no limit on ATM withdrawals from foreign accounts as I said on previous post. Furthermore, good luck if you try to pay a bar, a kiosk or a mini market with a credit card...

7. Posted by travellingtonyc (Budding Member 2 posts) 1y

Hi, thanks for all the replies. We will be travelling to Cos so should be safe..?

I read on this when looking for insurance:

"High risk countries. Check the government’s Smart Traveller website for the travel advisory status of your destination. Countries and areas deemed “do not travel” are usually not covered under any policy."

I don't think given the crisis and terror attacks in Tunisia it is considered a "high risk" country is it?

[ Edit: Edited on 10-Jul-2015, at 14:49 by travellingtonyc ]

8. Posted by mariha2912 (Full Member 115 posts) 1y

Financial crisis has not turned into social arrest or something. In case you go to Athens, familiarise your self with the concept of (peaceful) demostrations that take place nearly every day since the early '80s. Media for their own reasons started making a fusse about demostrations during last 4-5 years, so naive people assume there is a problem when people express their democratic rights while there is none.

Terror attacks could happen everywhere nowadays, those unlucky people in Tunisia would not guess what was coming to them (by the way I have been there a few years ago and it was one of the most "free-spiritied" muslim countries and still is). but mainly ISIS and the like have nothing against Greece as a country for the time been in order to be targeting it such as say they do with UK or France. Ammount of muslim population in Greece is low, some Greek muslims living on northern mainland and eastern islands such as Rhodes and Kos or the many refuggees and immegrants spread all around the country. No extremists and no organised large crowds of people herded spiritually one way or another. So Very very low risk of terror attacks in Greece. Of course you never know...

Do you mean Kos island? This is a major package tourism destination and a very safe one. It is the island of Hippocrates after all :)

9. Posted by robmer (Full Member 105 posts) 1y

Quoting mariha2912

There is no limit on ATM withdrawals from foreign accounts as I said on previous post.

I stand corrected. I realized my mistake shortly after making my post, but forgot to post a correction. Thanks for catching it.

10. Posted by mariha2912 (Full Member 115 posts) 1y

You are welcome Robmer : )