The consular section of the US Embassy in Greece issued a statement on Friday urging American citizens who are currently in Greece to apply for an extension if they cannot leave the country due to the ban on certain flights and the reduction of those in operation.
”U.S. citizens are permitted to enter the Schengen zone, which includes Greece, for up to 90 days without a visa. When visitors stay beyond the 90-day limit without receiving an extension, the Greek authorities may impose a fine of 600 or 1,200 Euros per person upon departure, depending on the length of the overstay,” the Embassy stated in the document.
”If you are unable to depart before your 90-day limit and wish to apply for an extension, you must call the closest Aliens Bureau at least two weeks prior to your required departure date to schedule an appointment. The Greek authorities evaluate each application on a case by case basis. There is no automatic extension of the 90-day limit because of COVID-19; you must request an extension from the Aliens Bureau or risk being fined upon departure,” it added.
The Embassy also told American citizens that ”The Department of State continues to urge U.S. citizens abroad considering a return to the United States to depart immediately while commercial flight options exist, or be prepared to sustain themselves overseas for an indefinite period without government assistance. There are no plans for chartered or evacuation flights from Greece to the United States.”
Americans residing or traveling abroad are encouraged to enroll in the Bureau of Consular Affairs’ Smart Traveler Enrollment Program, or STEP, so that they may take advantage of the following:
- Receive important information from the Embassy about safety conditions in your destination country, helping you make informed decisions about your travel plans.
- Help the U.S. Embassy contact you in an emergency, whether it be natural disaster, civil unrest, or family emergency.
- Help family and friends get in touch with you in an emergency.