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Plexiglass surrounds Santorini beach chairs


As Greece looks at reopening its borders to travellers in July, tourism operators on its most famous island are already making unique preparations for welcoming back tourists.

On a Santorini beach, plexiglass screens envelop sunloungers to help prevent any possible spread of COVID-19 when visitors return. 

 

Image Reuters

  

“We hope these constructions you see are not going to be the future for beaches,” beach bar owner Charlie Chahine says. 

 

“We don’t want this, but if this is necessary, and if this is what people’s safety depends on, such a construction or any such construction - we (just) want to work, we want to get going.” 

 

Businesses on Santorini know they have missed months of trade even if the country opens in July, Reuters reports. 

 

So keen for the season to start, operators have adopted various hygiene measures – like the Perspex idea. 

 

“I believe we have to start somewhere, so that there is work for our suppliers, for our employees. There are so many people that depend on hotels,” Santorini Hotel Association vice president Andreas Patiniotis said, adding that things would not be easy. 

 

Around 2 million people travelled to Santorini in 2018. 

 

 

Greece could become one of the first European nations to reopen its doors to international tourism following (or during) the coronavirus pandemic. 

 

According to ekathimerini.com, Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis is aiming for a formal launch of the tourist season on 1 July. 

 

But to keep Greece safer from coronavirus, a government proposal seeks to pass a rule that only allows people who have undergone COVID-19 tests and returned negative results to enter the Mediterranean nation. 

 

If someone falls ill or shows symptoms during a stay, they would be moved to specially quarantined hotels and other structures. 

 

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Written by: Mark Harada
Published: 10 May 2020


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