If you’ve never traveled to Greece, there a few things you’ll want to know before you travel. Greece is a rainbow colored palette of experiences from gorgeously colored beaches to high mountains, the different environments and culture make it a memorable destination. But if you don’t know some things, your travel may not be the kind of memorable you expected. So here are seven things to know when you’re traveling to Greece for the first time.
1. They still have dial up internet connections
Greece is very advanced in most of the high tourist areas and so they have modern internet and free wifi in the malls and squares of many cities. But there are more remote areas of Greece that don’t have the modern conveniences. Do your research and know whether or not you’ll have internet connection and if it’s going to be via dial up. Most places, kiosks, have prepaid internet access card for dial up, if you are going to those remote areas.
2. The sewers are ancient
Greece has an antiquated sewer system so using the facilities can be an adventure in itself. They aren’t able to handle the paper products of new european countries and almost always request that you don’t flush your toilet paper. Think of it like you were going to your Uncle John’s farm in rural America where they are on a septic system that was built in the early nineteen hundreds. These systems are even older than that, so you’ll be prepared to act appropriately and don’t flush those paper products.
3. Greece is a smoking country
Greece is a smoking country and I don’t mean smoking hot. Greeks still smoke in all public and private places and they aren’t ashamed of it. So, to be honest, you’re in their country and their rules. Grecians are very kind and helpful, but it’s rude to make a big deal out of their smoking habits and you’ll find less helpful people if you decide to make this a time to show them the error of their ways. It’s just not in your best interest to be rude. It’s best to understand the culture and wash your clothes and stuff when you get home.
4. Greece accepts cash, not much else
Most of the transactions you’ll likely encounter will require cash. Credit cards are accepted in most of the larger cities, but even then, if you are too far away from the well worn path, you’ll likely need cash. Luckily, because of this, ATM’s abound in most places, so you can easily get the cash you need. It’s best not to carry around too much cash for safety purposes, but having it handy in small manageable amounts is important.
5. Book your adventure early
Depending on what you’re planning for your adventure you’ll want to be sure to book it early. It’s much more affordable to book it, but there are places that offer packages all year round. Hostelbay.com, an innovative Greek platform, in co-operation with Hellenic Seaways, makes Hop-on/Hop-Off between Greek Islands a reality. There are many different ways to travel and have an adventure in Greece, just be sure to book your adventures early.
6. Look at the hotel ratings carefully
Greece’s hotel rating system may not be the same as international chains, so if you’re planning on staying at a local hotel, you’ll want to check the ratings carefully. You’ll need to be sure that it has all the amenities you want and expect. Arriving at your place of stay to find out they don’t have individual bathroom facilities and you want the privacy will make your stay less amazing and may even be traumatic, depending on the reason for your need. It’s best to make sure the ratings of where you’ll be staying are consistent with what you expect.
7. Don’t overbook yourself
When you’re planning your first vacation to Greece, there are so many things to do and experience, that you’ll be tempted to over book your adventures without thinking through what happens when you’re there. If you truly want to have the best experience while visiting Greece, then you’ll want to take your time and understand that you’ll not be able to visit the whole region in one visit, unless it’s months long. Pick the top places you just have to see during the time you’re there and plan the other stuff for another trip. Factor in lots of down time to experience the incredible sunrises and sunsets. Time to enjoy your meals and not rush. Greeks are known for more relaxed attitude and this is the perfect time to take advantage of that and relax and enjoy your travel.