After surprise reports on Monday that Czech travelers would need a negative COVID-19 test to go to Greece from next week, followed by some confusion over what documents would be needed to go to the popular holiday destination, Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babiš has (apparently) swung in to save thousands of vacationers from COVID-19 testing.
Following a personal conversation with Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis, Babiš claims to have convinced the country to take the Czech Republic off its list of states from which travelers need to submit a COVID-19 test, which includes Belgium, Bulgaria, Malta, Netherlands, Romania, Sweden, Spain, and the United Arab Emirates.
“I just spoke with Greek Prime Minister @kmitsotakis,” Babiš tweeted this afternoon.
“After my personal intervention and on the basis of new data on the epidemiological situation in the Czech Republic, which we have supplied to the Greek side, the Czech Republic will be removed from the list of countries whose citizens are obliged to submit a COVID-19 test when entering Greece.”
Právě jsem mluvil s řeckým premiérem @kmitsotakis. Po mé osobní intervenci a na základě nových údajů o epidemiologické situaci v ČR, které jsme dodali řecké straně, vyřadí Česko ze seznamu zemí, jejíž občané mají povinnost předkládat test na covid-19 při vstupu do Řecka.
— Andrej Babiš (@AndrejBabis) August 13, 2020
“This means that the original decision by the Greek government that Czechs can enter Greece from August 17 only with a negative test for coronavirus will not even enter into force,” Babiš added in a follow-up tweet.
Official confirmation from the Greek side, as well as the Czech Ministry of Foreign Affairs, has yet to come.
The Czech Foreign Ministry currently states on its website that anyone traveling to Greece from August 17 to September 1 will need to submit a negative molecular PCR test for COVID-19, no older than 72 hours, along with confirmation from doctor in English.
However, the Ministry has deleted a tweet from earlier this morning that references these requirements. Assuming the information provided by the Czech Prime Minister is valid, the Foreign Ministry should update the requirements listed on its website shortly.
Travelers going by plane to Greece from the Czech Republic still need to fill out a Passenger Locator Form at least 24 hours before their flight, and submit a provided QR code upon entry.
Update: Greece has officially cancelled the requirement for a negative COVID-19 test for travelers coming from the Czech Republic.