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Greece

A country with a hallowed past and an at-times turbulent present. There are few places in the world with so rich and diverse an artistic and cultural history as Greece. In terms of archaeology there are artifacts that are 200,000 years old, while architecturally Greece boasts Minoan and Dorian ruins dating back almost four millennia. Greece is also where drama originated, so there are plenty of ancient theatres to pick your way through. 

 

POPULATION   10,706,290

GDP approx. US$256.3 billion

UNEMPLOYMENT  APPROX. 9.6%

INFLATION  APPROX. 3.3%

GDP GROWTH   4.2%

 

LANGUAGE

The predominant language in Greece is Modern Greek (Demotike), with its origins dating back 3,500 years. English and French are also used as well as, to a lesser degree, German. Tourism is one of the largest trades in Greece, so visitors should get by with a basic understanding of any of these languages.

 

HEALTH

Greece and the Greek Islands do not present any health problems, any strange or particular disease and consequently, no vaccines are required to travel in Greece.

However, there are some common vaccinations to all international health certificates to do before leaving your country such as tetanus & diphtheria, polio and hepatitis A & B.

 

MONEY

Greece has been using the Euro currency since the beginning of 2002. Exactly one year after the Greek drachma (dr) went into the euro-currency basket, fixed at a rate of 340.75 dr to €1.  ATMs are to be found in every town large enough to support a bank – and certainly in all the tourist areas. If you’ve got MasterCard or Visa/Access, there are plenty of places to withdraw money. Cirrus and Maestro users can make withdrawals in all major towns and tourist areas.

 

CREDIT CARDS

The main credit cards like MasterCard, Visa (Access in the UK) and Eurocard are widely accepted in Greece. 

Banking Hours: Monday to Friday, 08:00-13:00

 

TRAVEL INFORMATION

It is the passengers responsibility to obtain all required travel documents, visas and permits, and for complying with the laws, regulations, orders, demands and other travel requirements of countries of origin, destination or transit. 

We strongly recommend that you go to the IATA Travel Centre website http://www.iatatravelcentre.com for more information.

 

ELECTRICITY

The power supply in Greece is 220 V AC at 50 Hz, with round two-pin sockets.

 

VISAS

Your passport or travel documents must be valid for 6 months.

All the citizens from the countries needed visa to enter Greece except from the countries of the European Union, the United States, Canada, Australia and New Zealand. Some Asian countries are exempted like Japanese, Singaporean and HKSAR etc…. for more visa information, please call the Greece Embassy in your country.

 

TRANSPORTATION

Easy to access Greece cities by planes, trains, ferries or buses.

Taxis are the main transportation for travellers in the cities, yellow with illuminated sign marked “TAXI” on top. One can stop a cab by simply raising a hand or go to Taxi stands (piatsa) which are located everywhere in Athens, it may occur that the taxi already has passengers inside or take other people during the ride, as it is common to share taxis. This practice is not done on small towns.

 

CLIMATE

Greece is perfect for those who enjoy the sun, as for over two thirds of the year the country basks under clear, sunny skies. Temperatures do vary, however. Winters are mild and rainy, with temperatures sometimes dropping to freezing point, especially in the north. Summers are long and dry, with extremes of 37°C (99°F), making the yearly mean temperature about 17°C (63°F). For those not overly fond of the heat, the mountainous areas offer some respite as they receive more rain in summer, and even snow in winter.

Rainfall figures vary, depending on the region. Thessaly is very dry, receiving around 38mm (1.5in). Portions of the western coast paint a different picture, however, receiving about 1,270mm (50in) of rain.   

http://weather.yahoo.com/regional/GRXX.html

 

WHEN TO GO

Spring and autumn are the best times to visit Greece; specifically May, June, September and October. Most of the country’s tourist infrastructure goes into hibernation during winter, particularly on the islands. Some of the smaller islands close completely and some islanders head off to alternative homes on the mainland for a few months. Many hotels, seasonal cafés and restaurants close their doors from the end of November until the beginning of April; bus and ferry services are either drastically reduced or cancelled.

 

WHAT TO BRING

Clothing - some areas in Greece are traditional and very relaxed, others, like Mykonos, can be more cosmopolitan. What you'll need for Santorini is obviously going to be different from a mountain village. But the usual rule is dress comfortably and casually. 

Take a light windbreaker or sweatshirt or pullover if you're travelling in the spring or fall. It can be cool in the late evenings on some islands and of course anywhere in the mountains. 

- Remember the essentials (camera, bathing suit, quality sunglasses, sunscreen, hat, 

  rubber beach sandals, etc). The sun is very strong in Greece. 

- Insect repellent, as Mosquitoes can be a problem in some areas. 

- Maps and guidebooks. 

- Universal plug adaptor if you have to recharge camera batteries, etc…

- Extra digital media (for a digital camera) and/or spare batteries for your gadgets

 

GRATUITY

Tipping is considered as part of your guide’s income and depending on how satisfied you are with their service. Suggested US$3 per person per day travelling in a group and US$6 per person per day tipping for driver and the local guide(s) in a small private tour.

 

TRAVEL INSURANCE

It’s absolutely essential to have adequate travel insurance covered, especially for the purposes of flight cancellation, delay or any other unexpected incidental cases occurred during the trip and to enjoy the journey with a peaceful mind.  

Take the travel insurance that meets your needs and understand its coverage.

 

YOUR TOUR ARRANGEMENTS

All land arrangements within Greece are solely at the discretion of our land operators who control the final scheduling of sightseeing programs based on current situation of the day or period like weather, traffic condition etc…….

Those situations are not under our control and cannot be held responsible for sudden changes.

Terms & Conditions are based on our website : www.f56.com/Terms&Conditions.pdf

 

HEALTH INFORMATION FOR TRAVELING ( FOR TRAVELLERS FROM HONGKONG )

http://www.travelhealth.gov.hk/eindex.html

 

OUTBOUND TRAVEL ALERT ( FOR TRAVELLERS FROM HONGKONG )

If you are traveling from Hongkong and would like to know more about the outbound

Travel alert please explore the website: http://www.sb.gov.hk/eng/ota/

If you are a Hongkong Resident holding a valid HKID card and have register a MyGovHK account,

you can use the ROTI which is free of charge. Or explore the website to register.

http://www.gov.hk/en/residents/immigration/outsidehk/roti.htm

 

Turkey

Turkey is a vast peninsula, linking Asia to Europe through the Sea of Marmara and the Straits of Istanbul and Canakkale. Across the Sea of Marmara, the triangular shaped Trace is the continuation of Turkey on the European continent, with its diverse geography, can experience four different climates in any one day. The rectangular shaped country is washed on three sides by three different seas. Its shores are laced with beaches, bays, coves, ports, islands and peninsulas. The summers are long, lasting as long as eight months in some areas. Turkey is also consisted with majestic mountains and valleys, lakes, rivers, waterfalls and grottoes.

 

Capital : Ankara 

AREA:   780 000 km2

COASTAL BORDERS: Mediterranean Sea in the south, Aegean Sea in the west and Black Sea in the north

LANGUAGE:  The official language is Turkish. English is widely spoken in major cities.

TIME ZONE: GMT+2; CET +1; and EST (US -East) +7

ELECTRICITY : 220V. European standard round two-pin sockets.

INTERNATIONAL DIAL CODE:  +90

 

HEALTH SERVICES

Cities and major touristic towns have a selection of private inter­national and public hospitals with good standards.

 

FOOD

Mainly Mediterranean nations Turkish food, other cuisines are available at most of cities in Turkey.

 

WATER

Tap water is chlorinated but still not suggested to drink; bottled water recommended which is available at all stores throughout the country.

 

COMMUNICATIONS

Turkey has three GSM operators, with all of them offering 3G services and almost over 95% coverage over the country.  Internet service is available all around the country. Internet services are available at major hotels in the country. 

 

VISAS

Visas are easily obtained upon arrival and are required for citizens of most countries.

Please check with the embassy in your country before travelling. 

For more visa information please explore: 

http://www.mfa.gov.tr/visa-information-for-foreigners.en.mfa

REMINDER:  Please ensure your passport or travel documents has at least 6 months validity

 

CURRANCY 

Turkish Lira ( TL) 

You can obtain currency before travelling to Turkey or on arrival. Exchange rates are usually slightly better in Turkey and all international airports have exchange facilities. Please note that Scottish notes are not accepted in Turkey. Travellers' cheques can be exchanged in banks only. Cash point machines (ATM) are available in most areas, which accepted major credit cards and give instructions in English. Please check with your banks to ensure that you can use ATM machines in Turkey with your credit card.  Credit card payments are accepted at hotels or major shops  in the country.  

 

CUSTOMS REGULATIONS

Please note that the following information is intended to give an idea about customs regulations, and our portal does not accept any responsibility for inaccuracy or mis-information. For further and accurate information please visit and www.gumruk.gov.tr.

 

USEFUL NUMBERS

Emergency   112

International Operator  115

Directory Assistance  118 80

Police    155

Jandarma (Gendarme)  156

Fire Department  110

 

CLIMATE

Due to Turkey's geographical conditions, one cannot speak about a general overall climate. In Istanbul and around the sea of Marmara (Marmara region) the climate is moderate 

(winter 4 C and summer 27C); in winter the temperature can drop below zero in some days. In Western / Southern Anatolia (Aegean / Mediterranean region) with average temperatures of 9C in winter and 29C in summer. The climate of the Anatolian Plateau (Central Anatolian region) is a steppe climate (there is a great temperature difference between day and night). Rainfall is low and there are more snow. The average temperature is 23C in summer and  -2C in winter. The climate in the Black Sea area (Black Sea region) is wet, warm and humid (summer 23 C, winter 7C). In Eastern Anatolia and South-Eastern Anatolia there is a long hard winter, where year after year snow lies on the ground from November until the end of April (the average temperature in winter is -13C and in summer 17C). 

http://www.weatheronline.co.uk/Turkey.htm

 

WHEN TO TRAVEL

Turkey is a year-round destination depending on your itinerary. 

Although the tourist "high season" (with associated higher rates) is from mid-June through mid-September, 

Spring and Fall are the best seasons to travel. The sun is warm and skies are generally clear. 

You can expect mild to warm temperatures and some rain during this time

 

TRAVEL INSURANCE

It’s absolutely essential to have adequate travel insurance covered, especially for the purposes of flight cancellation, delay or any other unexpected incidental cases occurred during the trip and to enjoy the journey with a peaceful mind.  

Take the travel insurance that meets your needs and understand its coverage.

 

RELIGION

Mostly 99% of the Turkish population is Moslem. The remaining is composed of Orthodox Christians, 

Gregorian Christians,Catholic, Suryani and Protestant Christians, and Jews. Although most of the population is Moslem, Turkey is a secular country and everyone has freedom of religion and beliefs. 

Religious Festivals

Ramazac Bayramý (Eid) = Ramadan

This is the festival which falls at the end of Ramazan, a period of fasting. Traditionally, sweets are exchanged as gifts. In more rural and conservative areas, you may find it more difficult to eat or drink in public during Ramazan period.  Traditionally, a sheep or cow is sacrificed at this time and the meat distributed to the needy and friends, family and neighbours.

 

YOUR TOUR ARRANGEMENTS

All land arrangements within Turkey are solely at the discretion of our land operators who control the final scheduling of sightseeing programs based on current situation of the day or period like weather, flights schedule change, traffic condition etc…….

Those situations are not under our control and cannot be held responsible for sudden changes.

Terms & Conditions are based on our website : www.f56.com/Terms&Conditions.pdf

 

GRATUITY

Tipping is considered as part of your guide’s income. Drivers and Guides are expecting some reward as a gesture of satisfaction. We suggested US$5.00 per person per day for sit-in-coach group tour and US$10.00 per person per day tipping for private car / minivan driver and the local guide(s) if their services are good.

 

HEALTH INFORMATION FOR TRAVELING ( FOR TRAVELLERS FROM HONGKONG )

http://www.travelhealth.gov.hk/eindex.html

 

TRAVEL ALERT

Hong Kong Government raises the Travel Alert for Turkey to “Yellow” since 21 Sep 2012, please check and make sure you have travel insurance covered to travel to this country.

If you would like to know more about the outbound Travel alert please explore the website: http://www.sb.gov.hk/eng/ota/

If you are a Hongkong Resident holding a valid HKID card and have register a MyGovHK account, you can use the ROTI which is free of charge. Or explore the website to register. http://www.gov.hk/en/residents/immigration/outsidehk/roti.htm