Even today the Greeks celebrate Easter, although many of them are probably distracted by the thought of tomorrow's opening of eateries. Because from the next Monday, after a break of almost six months, the inhabitants of Greece will finally be able to go to restaurants or cafes. After the government announced the opening date, entrepreneurs operating in this industry began to prepare the premises so that they could start work again tomorrow. However, all restaurants, taverns and cafes will operate under special conditions, following covid-related rules.
We wrote about some of them in the latest news updating the general changes in pandemic restrictions. Today we have collected the most important ones concerning the functioning of gastronomy. We know that a lot of people will be in Greece before the official season opening, so it's worth being up to date with the regulations.
From tomorrow, first of all, the "curfew" will be shortened, which will apply from 23 to 5 am. Therefore, all gastronomic establishments will close their activities at 10:45 pm so that customers have a chance to reach their homes and hotels on time.
The activity of restaurants, taverns and cafes will be limited only to tables set up in the open air. A distance of 1.5 meters is to be kept between the tables, and a maximum of six people can sit at one table.
Each time the staff is to disinfect the menu after the customers leave the premises, and the tables must be provided with disinfectants for guests.
As we wrote previously, twice a week the service of these premises is obliged to perform self-tests for covid infection. Interestingly, these self-tests are distributed by local pharmacies, and the residents of Greece collect them for free.
The service of catering outlets is required to wear masks at all times, and customers can only take off the masks when they are seated at the tables. There is also a recommendation that guests also wear masks while waiting for a meal, but it will be rather difficult to enforce.
Unfortunately, one of the new restrictions brought by the last few days is the ban on playing music in restaurants. This restriction also applies to live music, often found in Greek taverns. This restriction is related to the fact that customers do not have to speak louder to each other when visiting the premises. According to experts, this increases the risk of infection. So there will be a bit less Greek atmosphere to souvlaki and moussaka.
Slightly different regulations apply to premises located in shopping malls, stations or airports, i.e. generally indoors. These can only function selling take-out or delivery.
Some of you may ask what it is like to open eateries to send text messages informing you about the purpose of leaving your home. So we add these issues. The inhabitants of Greece have been sending this mandatory "report" for several months. In the case of going to a restaurant or tavern, it is a text message with the code "6" sent to the number 13033. This is the same code used when going for a walk or physical activity.
However, if you do not have a cell registered in the Greek mobile telephony, you will not send a text message. In this case, you need to fill in a handwritten form containing such information as: exit code, personal data, address and time of departure. In the event of leaving the apartment, there is a 3-hour time limit from leaving the house to the return. Mandatory texting is expected to be abolished with the official start of the tourist season, but no such decision has yet been made. It is worth remembering that, according to the announcements of the Greek government, tourists are subject to the same restrictions as for Greek citizens. So if you are going to Greece before the SMS obligation is lifted, it is better to have a completed form in your pocket.