Greece has always been a favorite tourist destination especially for couple and honeymooners. Thanks to its postcard like islands, clean azure water, great food & wine, small town friendliness. It’s undeniably a great destination for people who are looking for easy and relaxed atmosphere.
For our first year wedding anniversary, we decided to explore 3 places in Greece: the city of Athens – for it has the typical tourist sites, Mykonos – for the nightlife and beautiful beaches and Santorini – for its magical sunsets and fascinating caldera views.
Travel Agency in Dubai
We booked with Apollo Flight Centre (AFC Holidays) because of a friend’s recommendation. To save some, we could’ve just booked tickets and hotels on our own , but Greece is a bit overwhelming, so we wanted the guidance of someone who was really familiar with the area. We had several visit in Karama branch with Soukmen and Irene (the first agents we met in AFC) and then transferred to Parthiv and Yousef due to the incompetency of Irene while Soukmen leave the company. The 2 guys helped us booked all the hotels, domestic airfare, ferries, transfers to and from hotels, and any excursions we wanted.
Cost: AED 7500 per person, includes the following
- Visa fees
- Airfare via Turkish airlines (a bit of tiring since we have 2 hours layover time in Turkey, the agency informed us that they will booked us with a nonstop flight yet they failed so be careful when arranging your trip with them)
- Hotel accommodation (all in 4 star property)
- All transfers including airport and land (drop off to the ferry stations)
- Athens group tour and Santorini volcanic excursion
- All ferry tickets (economy)
The cost applied for Filipinos with valid UAE residency who wants to apply a Schengen visa.
Cost: 340 AED (included in the package) + 250 AED (optional premium service of VFS Global, we opt to have this service for a quick processing of our visas. We applied late since we waited for our passports to be renewed)
- Visa Applied: April 21, 2015
- Visa Approved: April 28, 2015
- Travel Dates: May 1 – 8, 2015
Travel medical insurance: The agency cost us AED 110 each (you can probably get yours with your travel agent)
The 3 hotels chosen by the travel agency are all great. Read my reviews for each hotel.
Note that food and beverages in the islands are fairly expensive than of the city.
Athens Sample Cost
|Less popular area in Athens
||Touristy areas like Plaka area
||Restaurant near the Acropolis area
Mykonos Town Sample Cost
Santorini Sample Cost
||Fira Restaurant (Avocado restaurant, outside our hotel)
Train & Ferries Tickets
- 1 to 3 train stations (not sure how much if more than 3 since we ride only few) 20 euros
- Athens -Mykonos port (economy Blue Star Paros) 34 euros per head per way (6 hours travel time)
- Mykonos to Santorini Port (economy Flying Cat 4 ferry) 61 euros per head per way (3 hours travel time)
- Santorini to Athens (economy Blue Star Ferries) 37 euros per head per way (8 hours travel time). But we upgraded our ticket (cabin lux Blue Star Ferries) 102 euros per head per way.
For the ferries ticket, it’s included in our package but price is mentioned in the ticket so I shared it too.
Bike/Car Rental Fees
- Quadbike in Mykonos 25 Euros per day (rented it with the referral from Archipelagos, this excludes petrol)
- The rental man named George required us to pay 300 euros as deposit, forgot the name of his rental shop but it’s like 5 minutes drive from Archipelagos hotel. We decided to change it to a car since it gets pretty darn cold at night and they give us a 40 euros per day
- Car rental fee per day with the second shop we found in Mykonos is 25 euros only. We got cheated by the first shop referred by Dmitry of Archipelagos hotel.
- A Santorini car rental fee is 30 euros per day. System is better since it’s already full tank and we will only pay for the petrol that we’ll consume.
Souvenirs and clothes are cheaper compare to islands of Mykonos and Santorini like a shirt cost 5 euro while in the other islands, it’s around 12 to 25 euros. FYI: Athens doesn’t sell Island shirts. If you’re in an island, they only sell those specific island souvenirs/shirts.
Total Cost Spend for our 8 Days in Greece (2 person)
We come up with this budget guide since a lot of our friends/colleagues are asking about our expenses during any trip. So this was created not to brag on it, but to give you an idea of what to expect when in Greece and help you in budgeting for this type of trip on the month of May.
- Agency Package = AED 15000 (includes airfare, hotel, visa, tours, ferries, transfers)
- Premium Service for Visa = AED 500
- Travel Insurance = AED 220
- Transportation = AED 50 (estimate)
- Food = AED 4500 (estimate)
- Shopping = AED 1000 (estimate)
Total Cost: AED 21270 (cost for 2 people, estimated for some points)