Greece Wildfires Which Cities & Islands To Avoid

Here are some regions in Greece with a "very high risk" of fires:

  • Attica: One of the regions with an extreme fire risk warning
  • Evia: One of the regions with a "very high risk" of fires
  • Corfu: One of the islands affected by wildfires
  • Rhodes: One of the islands affected by wildfires, with 19,000 people evacuated
  • Crete: At "extreme risk" of wildfires
  • Lesvos, Samos, Ikaria, Chios, Psara: Also at "very high risk" of fires

Thousands of travelers have been left stranded by the devastating wildfires that have struck the Greek islands of Rhodes and Corfu.  

The Dutch foreign ministry has issued a travel warning for Rhodes, Corfu, and Evia. The Greek government has evacuated 19,000 people in the country's largest wildfire evacuation.

As the fires continue to spread, approximately 19,000 people in villages and resorts on Rhodes have been evacuated, making it the largest fire evacuation ever undertaken in Greece, according to local news outlet Ellada 24. Corfu has also seen around 2,400 people evacuated.

The situation has led to about 10,000 British tourists becoming stranded on Rhodes.

The General Secretariat for Civil Protection in Greece has issued a Category 4 alarm (indicating very high risk) for many areas based on its Daily Fire Risk Map. The U.S. Embassy & Consulate in Greece has also warned of an ongoing high risk of fire in the coming days.

Several travel companies and airlines, such as Tui and Thomas Cook, have responded to the situation by canceling planned trips to Rhodes.

Despite the crisis, some airlines are still operating flights to and from Rhodes and Corfu, and most travel and flights to Greece are currently proceeding as scheduled.

As of now, the U.K. Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office has not issued advice against travel to Rhodes or Corfu, but it does warn of "active wildfires in Greece." The tourism minister for Greece, Olga Kefalogianni, has reassured tourists that only a small part of Rhodes is affected, and the airport remains operational.

Government advice for travelers has stopped short of discouraging travel to the affected islands. Instead, the U.K. Foreign Office urges travelers to check with their travel operators or hotels before traveling to ensure their planned areas are not impacted by the wildfires. The U.S. Embassy & Consulate in Greece advises U.S. citizens in or near the affected area to exercise extreme caution and follow instructions from local authorities and media alerts.

Some airlines have canceled flights to Rhodes, while others are allowing passengers to change their flights free of charge. British Airways, for example, offers passengers the opportunity to change flights without charge if they need to return home early, and EasyJet has canceled package holiday bookings in Rhodes until August 1 but is still operating flights to both Rhodes and Corfu.

For those who are stuck on Rhodes or Corfu and need assistance, the Greek government has established a crisis management unit to provide help. U.K. and U.S. residents can contact specific numbers for assistance.

Regarding travel insurance, specific clauses for wildfires are unlikely, and claims may only be valid if the home government advises against travel. The coverage will vary depending on individual insurance policies.

For those who need to return home early due to the wildfires, the possibility of a refund will depend on the booking conditions and whether the trip was part of a package deal or booked separately.

If travelers have lost their passports during evacuation, they should contact the Greek authorities or their home country's consular assistance line to arrange temporary travel documentation.

If future trips are planned to the affected areas, it's best to check with the travel operator or hotel regarding cancellation options, as the situation may vary depending on the specific circumstances and policies.

In summary, the wildfires in Greece have caused significant disruptions to travel plans on Rhodes and Corfu. While some flights are still operating, travelers are advised to exercise caution and check with their travel providers for the latest updates and options. For those currently stuck or requiring assistance, the crisis management unit set up by the Greek government can provide support.

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