What to Do if You’re Traveling to Greece
I’ve only been to Greece a few times, so I’m no expert on the place. But one thing I do know about Greece is that although it’s one of the most beautiful places in the world (especially the islands), I’m glad I’m not headed there this week. As you probably heard last night, the country didn’t pay €1.55 billion ($1.73 billion) to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), making it the first developed country to default on an IMF loan. The latest update at the time of posting from The New York Times suggested the country may soon accept the bailout package offered by its creditors.
Travelers heading to Greece in the near future should bring plenty of cash (Euros) since banks will be closed until July 6—and because ATMs will have long lines and are only giving locals up to €60 ($66) per day. And since you’ll be carrying a lot of cash, I’d recommend wearing a money belt or getting a jacket/vest (like one of Scottevest‘s) to hide your money.
If you’ll be on a cruise, I wouldn’t worry or change your plans because in cruising, if there’s a real issue, the cruise line will simply change the itinerary. However, if you’ll be staying in a hotel—especially in Athens—I’d stay away from any gatherings and plan for transportation disruptions. If you haven’t already gotten travel insurance, you better look into some options! I have an annual plan from Allianz (here’s more info).
More on Greece and upcoming travel there:
- Greece sticks with bailout referendum with fiscal lifeline talks in the balance (updated 2:59 pm ET, July 1, 2015)
- Tourism in Greece Remains Steady During Debt Crisis
- Tourists in Greece need not worry about running out of cash, say tour operators
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