Part 6: Opening of Crete after Corona Lockdown

The evolution of the situation and impact on tourism in Crete and Greece by the coronavirus from April 26, 2020.

Daily updates on the corona situation on Crete here on CreteTip !

pedestrian zone in Heraklion
Roundabout and pedestrian zone in Heraklion before Corona.

Next part: Corona crisis in Crete since May 4, 2020.

The Latest updates on the situation in Crete and Greece:

May 3, 2020 (Sunday):

Six new corona cases (to a total of 2,626, of which 1,108 were active and 37 were severe) and one further death (a total of 144) were reported.

May 2, 2020 (Saturday):

Today, only eight more corona cases (to a total of 2,620, of which 1,103 are active and 37 are severe) and three more deaths (to a total of 143) are reported.

From Monday, the population will be able to move freely within the prefecture of their place of residence, without having to carry any initial information with them or send it by SMS. Free movement will be allowed in all open areas and on beaches, with the exception of organised beaches, which will remain closed.
At the same time, the wearing of masks in closed areas will be required. This is obligatory in public transport and taxis, lifts, hospitals, diagnostic centres and laboratories, doctors’ surgeries, as well as for supermarket employees dealing with non-packaged food and employees of retail shops and in hairdressing and beauty salons and driving schools. A fine of EUR 150 is provided for persons who violate this order.

May 1, 2020 (Friday):

Due to today’s May holiday, the usual reports were not made and only 21 corona cases were reported, of which 36 are being treated intubated. No death was reported.

Special traffic measures for 1-3 May: Approximately 3,000 police officers will be on the streets to avoid travel outside the home, unnecessary travel, but also crowds of people with the same fines. In particular 300 euros for those trying to move outside the regional unit and in some cases the removal of license plates for 60 days and 150 euros for unnecessary travel. At the same time, it is recalled that a public gathering of more than 10 people are not allowed, in which case the fine is 1,000 euros per person.

From 4 May 2020, it will be possible to transport two people plus the driver for movements by car, but travel beyond the administrative district (prefecture) of permanent residence will continue to be generally prohibited and will probably not be permitted until 18 May 2020.

28 mobile test units for coronavirus will be stationed in Crete. 12 mobile units will be stationed in Heraklion, 8 in Chania and 4 units each in Rethymno and Lasithi.

Year-round hotels will be allowed to open from 1 June – but the President of the Hotels and Holiday Resorts Prefecture of Heraklion, says they will not open on 1 June: ‘We are not prepared to risk public health because of tourism!’
50% of hotels in Heraklion Prefecture will be closed during this year’s tourist season.

April 30, 2020 (Thursday):

Today 15 more corona infections (to 2,591, of which 1,077 are active and 38 with severe course), and one more death (to 140)

From Monday (4 May), face masks are mandatory in public transport, taxis, hairdressing salons, hospitals and diagnostic centers. Violations will result in a fine of 150 Euros.

April 29, 2020 (Wednesday):

Today, there are ten more corona diseases (to a total of 2,576, of which 1,860 are active and 41 have a severe course), and one more death (to 139).

Many companies will not open because the prescribed measures are not working.
Hairdressers: customers and employees must wear a mask. In addition, the distance to the hairdresser must be maintained, i.e. the chairs are no longer next to each other as in the past. They should be at least one meter apart. If the hairdresser is tall, three to four people come in and together with the staff they should not exceed six to seven people. Up to two customers enter the small hairdressers.
And in beauty salons a distance of 1.5 meters should be kept, customers and staff should definitely wear a mask.
Small shops: The removal and use of a mask even in the small shops that open Monday. One or two people in the shop with a mask, one comes out and the next comes in.

Regarding the start of the tourist season and the instructions that should be followed, Professor Hadjichristodoulou pointed out that everything is judged on the result and the only scenario that would definitely bring results is that Greece will not accept any tourists this year.
“The safest thing to do is not to accept tourists, just to be sure. The question is whether we want to. We have to see how we can make tourism safer so that there is not a lot of impact on society,” Hatzichristodoulou said.

Worldwide travel warning from the German Federal Foreign Office extended until at least 14 June.

April 28, 2020 (Tuesday):

Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis today announced the gradual lifting of corona control measures:
Starting May 4, the retail sector, i.e. the smaller shops, will gradually open. Hairdressers will open at the same time.
From the same date, SMS and the travel form will also be abolished, with traffic restrictions outside the prefecture for at least two more weeks. Access to the islands will not be allowed until 1 or 8 June.

From 4 May, the churches will be open for individual worship. And from Sunday 17th May, the faithful can participate in the divine liturgy and other services. But always with strict rules agreed with the Holy Synod and the scientific community.
The opening of the schools is scheduled for 11 May. At the beginning of the first summer month of June the opening of cafés and restaurants is expected, of course with specific rules. At the same time, the opening of year-round hotels, outdoor sports facilities, museums and archaeological sites is expected.
The department stores are expected to open in mid-June, as well as public services, playgrounds and parks. The indoor sports facilities will open on 15 or 22 June.
The opening of the seasonal hotels is planned for the end of June. However, it is unlikely that large gatherings such as festivals, concerts or sporting events with spectators will take place during the summer.

In any case, all this is only a dynamic plan, as the decisions are taken step by step and are based on the picture created by the epidemiologists. The government will impose fines per category and occasion to ensure that the rules are respected by citizens.

Today, 32 new corona cases (to 2,566, of which 1,851 are active and 40 are severe), and two more deaths (total 138)

April 27, 2020 (Monday):

Today, 17 new corona cases (to 2,534, of which 1,821 are active and 43 are severe) and two more deaths (to a total of 136).

The extension of the curfew and closure of shops will remain in force until 4 May inclusive. Supermarkets will be open Monday to Friday from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Saturday from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. during this period.

The reopening of universities and colleges is scheduled for 11 May, all other schools 14 days later. An extension of the school year and an earlier start to the new school year is being considered – and thus a drastic shortening of the summer holidays.

The President of the Hotel Association of Crete is preparing to have no tourist season this year, except for Greeks in August. Neither the ‘health passport’ has been settled, nor insurance issues in the event of corona cases among tourists or quarantine of hotels.

April 26, 2020 (Sunday):

Today, 11 more corona cases (to 2,517, of which 1,806 are active and 46 with a severe course), and four more deaths (to 134). The number of all cases in Crete remains constant at 18.

Here to the previous part: Corona situation on Crete until April 25, 2020.

Further information

Corona cases in Greece
Official government site about Corona cases in Greece
Information from the Greek Ministry of Health on Coronavirus in Greece (English)
Official Greek information site on coronavirus (Greek)

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