When travelling to Greece, it is advisable to bear in mind the following:
As a consumer, you are protected by Greek consumer protection law for all transactions you make while travelling in the country. All enterprises, regardless of their nature (tourist or otherwise), are obliged to issue written receipts for the total amount they receive. Possession of a receipt safeguards the consumer in the event of any claim or dispute with the enterprises. Foreign visitors must ensure that they have valid medical cover before departing.
The following is valid during your stay:
- The hotelier is obliged to lisence vacant rooms to customers and provide all advertised amenities.
- Within 3 days of receiving an enquiry for a room, by any means (telephone, letter, or email), the hotelier is obliged to inform the customer by print whether or not they accept the booking, and include details on the booking (type of room, length of stay, price). A written response protects both the customer and the hotelier.
- The deposit for the booking cannot exceed the 25% of the total accommodation cost, and on the other hand cannot be less than the charge for one night.
- In the event that the customer wishes to cancel a booking, and the cancellation is made 21 days prior to the agreed arrival date, the hotelier is obliged to refund the deposit in full, while for cancellations made within 21 days, the customer must pay the hotelier the 50% of the total cost of the cancelled booking.
- In the event that the hotelier is unable to provide rooms they have confirmed with customers, they are obliged to secure customers’ stay in alternative accommodation of at least the same category, in the same town, which offers the same amenities and services as those advertised by their own establishment.
- The hotelier is only responsible for valuable belongings entrusted to them by the customer, and for which they have issued the relevant receipt.
- Keeping pets of any kind in a hotel is forbidden, unless the hotel provides a designated area for pets. In all cases, a prior arrangement on this issue must be made between the hotelier and the tourist-consumer.
The following is valid for transactions with tourist agencies:
- The tourist agency is responsible to the consumer for all the services they have sold, including those provided by third parties (hotels, restaurants, car rentals, etc.), except in cases of personal or third party liability, or force majeure.
- In all cases, the customers of a tourist agency or car rental agency must be informed by print about the terms under which services or products are provided prior to making a purchase.
Specifically, for Organized Trips (P.O. 339/96), which Greek law defines as a fixed combination of at least two of the following elements, i.e. transport, accommodation or other services (participation in meetings or events of a professional, cultural or artistic nature, meals, guided tours etc.), it is obligatory to sign a relevant contract, which includes:
1. The terms attached to the services included in the contract (cost and category of accommodation).
2. Means of transport, meals included, itinerary, information pertaining to passports and necessary visas, cancellation policy, guided tours, entry to archaeological sites and museums, other recreational services, etc.).
3. An insurance policy which will state by print that in case of insolvency or bankruptcy of the tourist agency, the consumer, above and beyond other claims, will be entitled to a refund of the full amount paid, as well as immediate payment of repatriation expenses.
In all cases, the tourist-consumer:
- Should acquire, for their own convenience, detailed information regarding the use of public transport at their destination, especially with regards to the cost of the journey, ticket validity and cancellations, and recommended arrival times in advance of the departure of the service.
- Has to be aware, when using taxis, that drivers are obliged, upon request, to issue official receipts for the total cost of the journey, which include vehicle’s registration number and owner’s name.
- In the event of any omission or violations of the above, you may submit a complaint or claim on a 24h basis to the Tourist Police at the number 1571.