The strikes in Greece hit the news recently, so I thought I would create a guide to coping with Greece strikes when you travel. Here's some useful advice for planning your trip to Greece if strikes are happening.
You might have heard in the news recently, that there have been some strikes and demonstrations in Greece. And to be honest, I don't think it matters which month or year you read this article! I'm not going to go into the whys and the hows of it – this is a travel blog not a political commentary. Lets just say that strikes are a fact of life here in Greece, and looks like they will be for the foreseeable future. They don't happen every single week, but they do happen.
How Will Greece Strikes Affect My Travel Plans?
This is probably a question that most people ask themselves when they realise that Greece strikes are happening around the time of their vacation! So, here's a few pointers to help you out.
- General strikes (when everything stops) are very, very rare.
- Unless it is a general strike, if the metro strikes the buses will be running and vice-versa.
- Air traffic controllers rarely go on strike, but when they do, it's just for a few hours at a time. Flights are normally delayed rather than cancelled.
- Ferry strikes – It can be difficult to get off the islands when the ferry strikes.
When do Greece strikes happen?
Generally speaking, most strikes in Greece are planned a few days or weeks in advance. This means that it is possible to either alter travel plans or at least have contingency plans in place. Don't do anything drastic like cancel your vacation because of a strike! Life still goes on here, it's just that you might need to fly to a Greek island instead of taking a ferry for example.
What can you do?
To be honest, there are only a few circumstances in which a strike will affect you as a traveller. This will be either if there is a ferry strike or plane delay. When booking your trip, it might be tempting to maximise the use of your time by having snappy connections between ferry and plane journeys, but it might not be the smart thing. My suggestion, is to always leave a two day gap between a ferry journey and a flight. This gives time for you to find other options, or wait until a strike is over if one should happen when on vacation.
Keeping yourself informed is key, whether it is through contacting your airline, ferry company, or talking with the people in your hotel. Make sure you have those contact numbers available should you need them! You can also like our page at Real Greek Experiences. We (The Mrs and I !!) keep this updated with latest strike news. You will also find out about things going on in Athens and Greece you might not otherwise hear about.
And that's about all there is to say really! Each strike is different, as is each person's travel plans. Being aware that strike action is happening, and then taking proactive steps if they are needed is your ultimate response to Greece strikes. Other than that, relax, sip on a frappe, and enjoy the sun!