Six hundred Israeli tourists a week will be allowed to visit four Greek locations without the need for mandatory quarantine upon arrival, starting next week, according to an agreement signed between the two countries on Thursday.
Greek officials have agreed to the deal in principal on Wednesday, in a phone conversation between Foreign Minister Gabi Ashkenazi and Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Dandias. Greece's minister arrived in Israel early Thursday to finalize the details.
The cities, which Israeli tourists will be allowed to visit are Athens, Thessaloniki as well as the islands of Crete and Carpo.
Israeli tourists will not be able to visit the rest of the country because states in the European Union are not permitted to accept tourists from countries with high coronavirus infection rate, which in Israel now stands at 6.7%.
The tourists will be required to undergo a coronavirus test before boarding the flight in Israel and after landing in Greece. Israelis will be required to self-isolate until the results are known. They will not be required to quarantine upon their return in Israel.
"I welcome the decision for Greece to allow tourists from Israel in the age of coronavirus," said Ashkenazi. "This decision expresses the warm bond between the countries and the common desire to return to a normal life ... I hope that more European countries will follow suit."
Dandias is set to meet Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu later in the day to discuss the resumption of tourism and shared concerns over Turkey’s energy exploration in the eastern Mediterranean.