Random Musings

Being A Tourist In Greece In The Midst Of The Greek Crisis

July 10, 2015
Thessaloniki, Greece

A local shop owner who runs a coffee shop in the Old Chora of Alonissos said that she wished that the Greek crisis happened during the winter so by the time summer come, a solution might have taken place and in this case, tourists won’t be put off that much to come to Greece. July is supposed to be a busy month and Alonissos being one of the lesser known islands in Greece, it normally gets local Greek tourists visiting this area (although there were a bunch of British tourists last night at the bar that we were at). However, now that the Greeks had to practically save up their money for what’s bound to happen to their country – the local tourism industry has been hit hard by this crisis.

Damoucharia Beach, Pelion

Damoucharia Beach, Pelion, Greece

It is saddening really that the financial turmoil that they are currently in had to happen during the busiest season of their tourism industry which as we all know, is one of the industries Greece is relying on. We’ve been here for more than a week now and apart from the fact that some ATMs are empty, there really is nothing worth noting about our holiday except that I am definitely having a fantastic time. The crisis seem to be non-existent, for tourists at least since most of the shops, hotels and restaurants are operating their businesses as usual.

Skopelos, Greece

Skopelos, Greece

As a tourist, the crisis will not have an effect on you when you visit Greece these days however, it will somehow sadden you a bit when you see how it is affecting the local Greeks. We passed by Volos the other day at around 6am and found all the ATMs full of people waiting for their turn to get their daily EUR60 limit from their own bank accounts. If you think about it, it is truly unfair for them that they can’t even access their own money – the money that they have worked hard for. Since the Greek Mister holds an international bank card, this EUR60 limit doesn’t apply to him so whenever he takes out money from the ATM, he would have to hide it out of respect. It’s not because he’s afraid that the people waiting would be rude to him or mug him, he just thinks that it is unethical if he would flaunt the amount of money that he was able to take out of the bank when all of the Greeks are struggling to get by with the EUR60 limit.

Steni Vala, Alonissos, Greece

Steni Vala, Alonissos

What I find really very impressive though is that the Greeks have maintained their hospitable and generous nature all these times. There is no other place in the world that I have been in which a restaurant, a bar or a coffee shop would give their diners complimentary nibbles to go along with their drink, complimentary dessert after a heavy meal or even complimentary slices of cake to go with your Greek frappe. I thought that with the crisis that they are in now, they would stop this practice and start charging people for all these freebies. I guess there is no stopping the Greeks from being the kind-hearted people that they truly are.

Old Chora, Alonissos, Greece

Old Chora, Alonissos

I truly hope that this crisis will end soon and that everything will go back to normal. If you’re bound to Greece anytime soon, I think you have all the reasons to pursue your holiday now more than ever. Help this beautiful country get back to its feet and show the rest of the world how beautiful it truly is – with or without the crisis.

All photos taken during my holiday in Thessaloniki, Pelion, Skopelos and Alonissos in the midst of the Greek crisis.

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6 Comments

  • Reply Ebe August 1, 2015 at 12:29

    Thanks so much for sharing your experience. We’re contemplating a trip to Greece and weren’t sure if it was a good idea. Seems like spending our tourist dollars there might be the best thing we can do.
    Ebe recently posted…Baby UBlau: U55 & U4My Profile

    • Reply Pinay Flying High August 1, 2015 at 19:24

      I never had any problems as a tourist while there but I would probably avoid Athens if I were you since being the capital, it’s more prone to having rallies and protests if they decide to have one. :p
      Enjoy your Greek holiday! 🙂

  • Reply Mitzie Mee July 16, 2015 at 15:18

    Aww, that’s such a nice spirit. I feel sorry for the Greek people and the hardship they’re going through these days, and I think it’s disgusting how some people of other nationalities start pointing fingers at the Greeks, telling them to blame themselves. Sorry, but since when did that help anyone? I hope Greece will manage to get through the crisis and come out stronger on the other side. It’s a wonderful country with some good-spirited people, and I wish them all the best:):) Enjoy your last days in the sun.
    Mitzie Mee recently posted…Dubai: Shake Shack and DinosaursMy Profile

    • Reply Pinay Flying High July 21, 2015 at 13:40

      Capitalism is evil but then again, it is everywhere.
      I do think that partly, it is their government’s fault as to how they ended up in such situation but you can’t blame everything on them alone as they were taken advantage of since the crisis started.
      One thing’s for sure though, Greece is now more popular than ever because of all the publicity. :p

  • Reply Photo Cache July 15, 2015 at 03:52

    I share the same exact sentiment as the first commenter.
    Photo Cache recently posted…Port of Call: Santorini – Doors, Windows, Gates, Dogs and Cats Part 3My Profile

  • Reply Suze The Luxury Columnist July 11, 2015 at 22:27

    It is very sad to see how the crisis is affecting the Greek people, I hope they can spring back from this soon.
    Suze The Luxury Columnist recently posted…Flytographer – Telling Your Story in StyleMy Profile

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