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Home News, Press releases Useful consumer protection related information regarding bank holiday and bank transactions in Greece

Useful consumer protection related information regarding bank holiday and bank transactions in Greece

The European Consumer Centre Hungary (ECC) hosted by the Hungarian Authority for Consumer Protection was informed by ECC Greece about the latest news regarding the Greek banks, especially the bank transactions from Greece to foreign countries.

On 28 June 2015, the Greek government took urgent capital control measures, including the closure of branches of Greek and foreign banks alike and the imposition of limitations in regular bank transactions (“bank holiday”).

Following the recent Euro-Summit “Agreement” on Greece of 12 July 2015, which has been considered a positive development for the country’s prospective economic situation, the government revoked its aforementioned decision on 18 July 2015 as regards the bank holiday and decided the re-opening of bank branches as from Monday, 20 July 2015.

Capital control measures still remain valid, but according to the information provided by ECC Greece, these measures affect only accounts held in Greek bank institutions. People visiting Greece and holding accounts in foreign bank institutions (e.g. the Hungarian consumer’s Hungarian bank account) are completely free to make cash withdrawals using their cards, up to the daily limit agreed with their card issuer.

Additionally, according to ECC Greece, debit and credit cards can be used as regular means of payment in retail establishments or other businesses that have point-of-sale (POS) machines installed, in order to handle their transactions. It is, hereby, noted that traders operating in Greece cannot refuse payments made with credit and debit cards and whoever is faced with any incident like this is kindly requested to report it immediately to the appropriate authorities (Police, Tourist Police, General Secretariat for Commerce and Consumer Affairs).

According to the information provided by the Greek ECC, generally speaking, visitors being already in Greece and those who are planning to come are guaranteed to enjoy a problem-free experience.

Finally, ECC Greece called the attention that capital or cash transfers towards accounts held in foreign bank institutions operating outside Greece is still not allowed, except from cases where one has to cover special educational or medical expenses abroad.

Taking into account the restrictions on money transfer outside of Greece, we would like to draw the attention of every consumer that during the informal complaint handling of cross-border complaint against Greek traders with the help of the ECC Hungary, which is member of the European Consumer Centres’ Network, problems may occurs in cases where a Greek trader has agreed to compensate a consumer residing outside Greece, by depositing money to his/her bank account. ECC Greece hopes that the ban on money transfer will only be temporal.

If we receive new information from ECC Greece, we will provide further details regarding this issue.

In case Hungarian consumers have further question or you have a cross-border consumer complaint which cannot be solved directly with the Greek trader, it is advisable to turn to ECC Hungary for help. Our Centre can provide information and free legal assistance to consumers in settling their cross-border complaints against foreign trader seated in another Member State, Iceland or Norway. (,

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