For entry into Greece, citizens of Australia, Canada, New Zealand, South Africa, the United States, and almost all other non-E.U. countries are required to have a valid passport, which is stamped upon entry and exit, for stays up to 90 days. All U.S. citizens, even infants, must have a valid passport, but Canadian children under 16 may travel without a passport if accompanied by either parent.
Citizens of the United Kingdom and other members of the European Union are required to present a valid ID (driving licenses do not qualify) for entry into Greece; you may stay an unlimited period (although you should inquire about this at a Greek consulate or at your embassy in Greece). Children under 16 from E.U. countries may travel without an ID if accompanied by either parent. All E.U. citizens are reminded that they should check the requirements for non-E.U. countries through which you might travel to get to Greece.
For stays longer than 90 days, all non-E.U. citizens will require visas from the Greek embassies or consuls in their home countries. If already in Greece, arrangements must be made with the Bureau of Aliens, 173 Leoforos Alexandras, 11522 Athens (tel. 210/770-5711). See www.frommers.com/planning for information on how to obtain a passport.
For Residents of Australia -- Contact the Australian Passport Information Service at tel. 131-232, or visit the government website at www.passports.gov.au.
For Residents of Canada -- Contact the central Passport Office, Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade, Ottawa, ON K1A 0G3 (tel. 800/567-6868; www.ppt.gc.ca).
For Residents of Ireland -- Contact the Passport Office, Setanta Centre, Molesworth Street, Dublin 2 (tel. 01/671-1633; www.irlgov.ie/iveagh).
For Residents of New Zealand -- Contact the Passports Office at tel. 0800/225-050 in New Zealand, or 04/474-8100, or log on to www.passports.govt.nz.
For Residents of the United Kingdom -- Visit your nearest passport office, major post office, or travel agency or contact the United Kingdom Passport Service at tel. 0870/521-0410 or search its website at www.ukpa.gov.uk.
For Residents of the United States -- To find your regional passport office, either check the U.S. State Department website or call the National Passport Information Center toll-free number (tel. 877/487-2778) for automated information.
Travelers bearing passports from the European Union countries, the USA, Canada, Australia and New Zealand do not need visas, nor do citizens of many other countries. But to be sure, check with the nearest Greek consulate. And allow several weeks to get such a visa.
Passengers from North America arriving in Athens aboard international flights are generally not searched, and if you have nothing to declare, continue through the green lane. (Because of the continuing threat of terrorism, baggage is X-rayed before boarding domestic flights.) Citizens of the United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and other non-E.U. countries do face a few commonsensical restrictions on what you can bring into Greece. Clearly, no narcotics: Greece is very tough on drug users. No explosives or weapons -- although upon application, a sportsman might be able to bring in a legitimate hunting weapon. Only medications for amounts properly prescribed for your own use are allowed. Plants with soil are not. Dogs and cats can be brought in, but they must have proof of recent rabies and other health shots.
What You Can Take Out of Greece: (All Nationalities): Exportation of Greek antiquities is strictly protected by law. No antiquities may be taken out of Greece without prior special permission from the Archaeological Service, 3 Polignotou, Athens. Also, you must be able to explain how you acquired your purchase -- in particular, icons or religious articles. A dealer or shopkeeper must provide you with an export certificate for any object dating from before 1830. In general, keep all receipts for major purchases in order to clear Customs on your return home.
For further information on what you're allowed to bring into your country of residence, contact one of the following agencies:
U.S. Citizens: U.S. Customs & Border Protection (CBP), 1300 Pennsylvania Ave. NW, Washington, DC 20229 (tel. 877/227-5511; www.cbp.gov).
Canadian Citizens: Canada Border Services Agency (tel. 800/461-9999 in Canada, or 204/983-3500; www.cbsa-asfc.gc.ca).
U.K. Citizens: HM Revenue & Customs tel. 0845/010-9000 (from outside the U.K., 020/8929-0152), or consult their website at www.hmce.gov.uk.
Australian Citizens: Australian Customs Service at tel. 1300/363-263, or log on to www.customs.gov.au.
New Zealand Citizens: New Zealand Customs, the Customhouse, 17-21 Whitmore St., Box 2218, Wellington (tel. 0800/428-786; www.customs.govt.nz).
There are no immunization requirements for getting into Greece, though it's always a good idea to have polio, tetanus, and typhoid covered when traveling anywhere.
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.