A beginners guide to practical conduct in Greece!
It’s very easy for Israelis to get by when they visit Greece. The geographical proximity and the similar climate, lifestyle, and mentality shared by Greeks and Israelis allow the latter to quickly and easily fit in the new environment.
Before realizing the “Greek real estate dream”, it might a good idea to get a little more acquainted with the local customs, particularly when it comes to basic conduct. To make things easier, we listed a number of important tips that will definitely help you in your first steps after landing. Experience shows us that within no time you’ll actually be guiding others how to behave.
Currency, credit, and banks.
The official currency in Greece is the Euro. In order to convert money you must bring a passport. Currency exchange is recommended on weekdays, when the commission is low. All international credit cards are acceptable in Greece – Visa, Diners, American Express, MasterCard, Carte Blanche, etc. (you can tell which credit card each store accepts by the sticker located on the display window). Banks in Greece are open every day from 2:00-08:00 PM, except Saturdays and Sundays.
The local power grid runs on 220 volts, like in Israel, although sometimes an adapter is required.
Doctor in Greek = Iatros, dentist = Diatros. Most local doctors speak English from their studies abroad. Emergency medical services are provided at the government hospital (Dial 166). Also, Greece has a large private medicine sector with many experts in specific fields. Pharmacies are open every day from 8:00 AM to 2:00 PM and from 5:00 to 9:00 PM (on Saturdays they’re open only in the morning).
Greece’s museums and major tourist attractions operate during the summer from 8:00 AM to 8:00 PM, and in the winter from 9:00 AM to 7:00 PM. They are closed on Mondays and holidays! It is recommended to check the opening hours of each specific site before going.
Over the years the hot country of Greece developed the tradition of siesta – a rather extended lunch break. Accordingly, in the summer you will find that most places are closed between 14:00-17:00.
Entrance to beaches.
All beaches in Greece belong to the state/local municipality, and most of them don’t charge admission fees to enter.
When making a domestic call from a local phone, always dial the city code before the telephone number (codes of major cities: Athens – 210, Thessaloniki – 231, Rhodes – 2241). When calling a mobile phone, first dial (+30) and only then the phone number. Domestic telephone directory – 151, international directory – 161-169.
Emergency numbers and information.
Ambulance – 166 (150 in Thessaloniki), Fire Department – 199, Police, 100, Tourist Police – 171, technical assistance on roads -104, speaking clock – 141.