Leaving Greece and Moving On

Leaving Greece? Find out how to notify schools, residency officials, banks and how to end contracts, export a car and move pets…

Here is a list of tasks that should be considered when leaving Greece:

Embassy

Anyone who registered with their Embassy on arrival should advise them that they are moving on. They should also let the Embassy know of their next destination.

Local Authorities

EU citizens are not required to inform the Foreigners Department of the local Police of their departure from Greece and do not need to hand in their residence certificate.

Non-EU citizens with a residence permit should contact the local authorities to inform them of their departure.

Education

A reasonable amount of notice of a child's departure should be given to the school. There may be outstanding bills for school fees, transport or meals to be settled.

Parents may need a certificate stating the latest grade passed by the child in order to enrol their child in a new school. This should be requested from the school when giving notice of departure.

Housing Issues

Rental contracts are generally for a three-year period and, by law, the tenant may not leave before the expiry date. If the tenant does leave before the expiry date, the landlord has the right to sue the tenant, although this is rare. The landlord may keep the security deposit.

Tenants should give a minimum of one month's notice if leaving the property before the expiry date of the contract.

Utilities

Electricity

When moving out of a property, customers must fill in a request for service disconnection at a local DEH office a few days before they leave the property. An appointment for meter reading can also be scheduled. Once the service has been disconnected, a final bill for the customer is issued and sent to the person's new address. The amount due is based on actual consumption minus the amount paid when the contract was signed. A refund will be provided, if appropriate.

Gas

For information on disconnecting the gas supply, contact the Customer Service department of the relevant gas supplier by telephone. They will advise on the exact documents required to terminate the contract, as the procedure varies based on the type of accommodation and whether the applicant is the owner or tenant.

Some of the main gas suppliers in Greece include:

Water

The water supply in Greece is managed by the local council; there are offices within each Municipality. For information on disconnecting the water supply, contact the regional water department at the local Town Hall or Municipality Office. For those in rented property, if the bills are not issued in the tenant's name the person must request a bill from their water supply company. A receipt of payment of this bill must be presented to the landlord when vacating the property.

Telephone

The main telephone line provider in Greece is OTE.

To disconnect the telephone line, call OTE from the telephone line which is to be disconnected; service will be disconnected the same day. For those in rented property, if the line can't be disconnected because the bills are not issued in the tenant's name, then the tenant should provide details regarding the line and a bill will be issued. The person will pay for their consumption until that particular day. This OTE receipt must be presented to the landlord before vacating the property.

If the person has a contract with a telephone provider other than OTE, they may have to pay for the months remaining on the contract. However, if the person is leaving Greece, some companies may accept to cancel the contract before the due date.

Healthcare and Social Security

It is necessary to inform the local social security organisation of the insured's departure from Greece. They may require that the health booklet be handed in, however, this will depend on the social security organisation in question.

Contact doctors and dentists, and, if necessary, have health records forwarded to the new practitioner.

Business and Tax Issues

Banking

Cancel any standing orders for the payment of utility bills and credit card payments and check that all invoices have been settled. Inform the bank in writing of a change of address. If the account is to be closed, provide the bank with one month's written notice.

Contact credit card companies to notify them of a new address to which to send statements. To cancel debit and credit cards, provide at least one month's written notice.

Tax

Inform the Greek tax authorities of the intention to leave Greece. The tax payer must file an income tax return and pay any outstanding taxes.

Mail Forwarding

The Hellenic Post (ELTA) provide a mail forwarding service for up to six months, however this service only exists for mail forwarding within Greece. Applications for this service should be made at the local post office.

  • ELTA Customer Service Centre
    Tel
    : 800 118 2000
    Website

Vehicles and Driving

Cars and bikes

If exporting a vehicle, the owner must follow the applicable procedure for importing a car to that specific country. Contact the local Embassy or Consulate for information on registration procedures and local regulations in the destination country.

Car insurance

An insurance policy may be terminated at any time with a written declaration; termination takes effect after 30 days.

The insurance provider reimburses any payments that have already been made for the period between termination and the policy's expiry date. It is suggested to request proof of bonus/malus (no-claims bonus) prior to departure.

Exporting Pets

Depending on the destination, some animals may require a period of quarantine. Their move will almost certainly require documentation and possible additional vaccinations or similar medical treatment.

Most domestic pets require documentation before they can travel. The EU Pet Passport covers dogs, cats and ferrets for movement within Europe. Using the Pet Passport, dogs, cats and ferrets may travel between the UK and Ireland, and Europe without quarantine, provided some (stringent) requirements are met. The system is called the Pet Travel Scheme (PETS).

DEFRA, the UK Department for Environment, Food and Rural affairs, has comprehensive and up-to-date information on its website. DEFRA can also provide an information pack on request.

  • For information from DEFRA about the Pet Travel Scheme (PETS): Click here
  • Pet Travel Scheme
    Tel
    : +44 845 933 5577
    email
    Open: Mondays to Fridays 08:00-18:00 GMT

Travelling to other EU destinations with pets with passports (cats, dogs and ferrets) is relatively straightforward; relocating to a non-EU country may be more complicated. Contact the Embassy in the new country of residence for up-to-date information.