I bought cheap $550 United tickets back in April DFW-ATH round trip, with a connection in IAD, for a friend and myself. We had been talking about travel and actually looking at Greece for April 2022. But she works in education and an April trip would of necessity be shorter, so when this sale popped up, we just did it. I had been watching Greece and felt pretty confident it would be open. I then booked all our lodging on booking.com with free cancellation (with late cancellation dates). We knew July would be hot, but it meant we could stay a few days longer.
It was both a pretty fast paced trip, yet relaxed. Nights were:
Santorini - 2 nights at Ianthe Apartments and Villas, rental car with Vazeos for 2 days at airport;
Nafplio - 2 nights at the Agamemnon Hotel, rental car from Athens Car Rental at the Athens airport after flying back from Santorini;
Itea - 1 night at the Hotel Kalafati (for Delphi);
Kastriki- 2 nights at Guesthouse Plakias (for Meteora); and
Athens 4 nights in Check Point - Plaka, an apartment. Car turned back in at airport upon return to Athens.
First flight change occurred about a month or so ago, making our connection tight, so I was able to rebook a flight with a longer connection through EWR with no change fee
However on Friday night before leaving, our Sunday flight DFW-EWR was cancelled and United rebooked it for Monday - leaving our Sunday EWR-ATH in place. Ha! After checking online options, I called and spent 2 hours on hold while I packed, since one of the options had us leaving a day early. The reasons for cancellation were stated as the tropical storm, plus a closed runway - and there were only 2 or 3 options for rebooking. We ended up changing our entire flight and routing through IAD again (with an almost 8 hr layover, but hey, we were still headed to Greece!). Once an agent answered, it was fast and easy. (Also I could hear a rooster crowing a number of times - she said she was working from home. Lol.)
We then had to go back in and edit our PLR forms for Greece. Since we didn’t have a QR code yet, it was easy (once we figured out how) and it triggered a new email for boarding. We used the United app, Travel Ready Center, to upload our Vaccine card photos and passport info and Greece email screenshot. I have since lost track of the checkin process, but everything was checked, verified at DFW, and then at the gate in IAD we had to show all docs again and get our boarding pass stamped before getting on the plane to Athens.
The PLR QR code arrived via email right at midnight (Greece time) just before we took off from EWR. That was a relief! Flight was full and normal but with the addition of masks. Upon landing, we were the only flight going through immigration - no PCR testing and it was fast. My daughter had flown in a week earlier from Dubai and they did a PCR test on almost everyone on the plane (took 2 hours).
Our flight landed about 10:00 am and we had a separate Aegean ticket to Santorini at 5:15. But there was an earlier flight at 1:30 and we were able to switch (after a couple of lines). Getting to Santorini a few hours earlier sure isn’t a bad thing! When I confirmed the earlier flight, I quickly emailed Vazeos Car Rental about the time change and they met us at the Santorini airport with our automatic car - quick and easy. Driving itself wasn’t so quick and easy and I might think twice if there were normal crowds. But I was just careful. The car gave us freedom for our one full day and took care of getting to and from the airport.