Greek embassy hires staff to handle ‘unusually high’ visa demand

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The Greek embassy in Delhi has increased its staff to handle the surge in visa applications, she said.

The Greek move to bolster staff is similar to other European countries and follows complaints of long delays by visa applicants. The Travel Agents Association of India (TAAI) has also asked India’s External Affairs Ministry to intervene as the delays are impacting holiday plans.

“An exceptionally high volume of requests has been recorded over the past few months. On the instruction of Minister of Foreign Affairs Nikos Dendias and in consultation with Minister of Tourism Vassilis Kikilias, the Greek Embassy in New Delhi as well as the consular office were immediately reinforced with additional staff in order to cope with the increase in entry visa applications,” the embassy says.

Read also : Italy and Greece ease Covid-19 restrictions ahead of tourist season

The embassy said “special options” will be offered to all Indian citizens who were unable to travel to Greece in May due to visa delays. He declined to specify additional details about special options.

“Right now we are all processing (visas for) immediate departures and doing our best to return to the standard processing time which is fifteen days from the date of application,” he added.

“The issuance of visas to the United States and many Schengen countries, particularly Greece, is a major hurdle facing the travel industry… In addition, some missions retain passports indefinitely, which which leads to uncertainties and cancellations which result in huge costs for travelers,” said TAAI President Jyoti Mayal.

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