Living in Greece

A practical guide to moving, living, working & traveling in Greece, plus musing and misadventures from an American in Athens

IKEA Greece

IKEA greecePhoto by John Karakatsanis

IKEA has five stores in Greece, with plans for at least three more locations to increase its 14 percent share of the Greek home market and meet consumer demand for what locals describe as “affordable, trendy” furniture.

However, the debt crisis has flattened sales, causing the largest furniture retailer (Neoset) to shut down and SATO to withdraw from the market as of November 2012. Fourlis has since shifted focus to other countries, a decision validated by a 16.7 drop in 2012 sales.

*Article last updated September 1, 2014

Author’s note

This post was created before the IKEA Greece website offered an English version in early 2011, but their 2012 revamp is (again) only in Greek so info below has been updated and expanded.

Stores

Addresses, phone numbers, email addresses and hours of operation for each location in Greece. All feature a restaurant, supervised playroom and free parking (spaces limited).

1. IKEA Athens – Eleftherios Venizelos International Airport, Spata
19019 Spata
Tel: 801 11 22 722 or (210) 35 43 403
Fax: (210) 35 43 599
Email: cs.athenseast@ikea.gr
Open: Monday – Friday 10:00 – 21:00 and Saturday 10:00 – 20:00
How to get there
a) By public transport: Take the metro and proastiakos/suburban railway toward the airport, or any Athens airport ‘X’ bus and get off at stop ‘IKEA.’
b) By car: Use highway ‘Attiki Odo’, take exit 20 ‘Pros El. Venizelos’ and continue toward ‘Goods and Services’ and turning left in the roundabout before getting to the airport entrance. See, “Map.”

2. IKEA Thessaloniki
12th km Thessalonikis – Piraeus
57001 Pylaia
Tel: 801 11 22 722
Fax: (2310) 475 150
Email: cs.thessaloniki@ikea.gr
Open: Monday – Friday 10:00 – 21:00  and Saturday 10:00 – 20:00
*Free Wi-Fi in the restaurant
How to get there
a) By public transport: Accessible via buses 2, 3, 8, 67, 69, 72, 76, 87 and 88.
b) By car: Use Thessaloniki-Peraia/Pylaia toward the airport (aerodromio). See, “Map.”

3. IKEA Athens – Aigaleo
Kifissou 96
12241 Aigaleo
Tel: 801 11 22 722
Fax: (210) 5400599
Email: cs.athenscenter@ikea.gr
Open: Monday – Friday 10:00 – 21:00 and Saturday 10:00 – 20:00
How to get there
a) By public transport: Take bus 420 or 829 and get off at stop ‘IKEA.’ Also accessible by metro to stop ‘Aigaleo,’ then remainder of journey by bus 829.
b) By car: Use Leof. Kifissou. See, “Map.”

4. IKEA Larissa – Thessaly
8th km Old National Road Larissa-Athens
41500 Nikaia
Tel: 801 11 22 722
Fax: (2410) 568 599
Email: cs.thessalia@ikea.gr
Open: Monday – Friday 10:00 – 21:00 and Saturday 10:00 – 20:00
How to get there
a) By public transport: Catch KTEL bus 15 from the central square, buy a ticket on the bus, stop is in front of IKEA store.
b) By car: Store is located at the junction where the old and new National Highways Thessaloniki-Larissa/Athens meet. Use exit 4 if coming from Thessaloniki, and exit 1 if coming from Athens. Follow IKEA signs. See, “Map.”

Size: 18,500 sq. meters
Parking spaces: 1136

5. IKEA Ioannina – Originally scheduled to open early 2010, then postponed November, it finally opened December 18.
130th km Ioannina-Athens National Road
45500 Ioannina
Tel: 801 11 22 722
Fax: (2651) 955 59
Email: cs.ioannina@ikea.gr
Open: Monday – Friday 10:00 – 21: 00 and Saturday 10:00 – 20:00
How to get there
a) By public transport: Catch KTEL Ioannina bus from central square, buy ticket on the bus, stop is in front of the IKEA store.
b) By car: Use National Highway Ioannina-Athens. See, “Map.”

Size: 18,000 sq. meters

Ordering Points

There are two Greek island locations where customers can place IKEA catalog orders and arrange delivery or collect items in person, as of November 2012. They ‘order and collection’ centers, rather than fully stocked stores with inventory.

1. Rhodes
2nd km on Rhodes-Lindos highway, next to Intersport

Delivery to: Chalki, Karpathos, Leros, Nisyros, Patmos, Rhodes, Symi and Tilos.

2. Chania
Leof. Karamanlis Konstantinou 404/Souda Road
Phone: 80111 22722
After years of debating whether to build a physical store in Irakleio or an online store to serve all Greek islands, a location has been announced for Chania, Crete. — Facebook page, Living in Crete

New stores on hold

Due to the rising cost of doing business in Greece and falling sales, Fourlis said it would not open any new stores until after 2012 and gave no specific opening dates.

7. IKEA Athens (3rd store) – Announced for end of 2011

8. IKEA XanthiAnnounced for end of 2011

In several places in Greece, there are IKA signs. To understand the difference between IKA and IKEA, see “IKEA vs. IKA in Greece.”

The Fourlis Group said its plan to open 10-12 IKEA stores in the Balkans over 10 years is on track, despite a 42.6 percent decrease in net profits in 2009. Stores planned for Greece have been delayed or scrapped because of the debt crisis, with expansion now planned in Turkey, Bulgaria, Romania and Cyprus.

IKEA Greece website

Now only in Greek, after a late-April 2011 relaunch: www.ikea.gr

As of mid-2014, there is currently an option to shop online. However, selection is very limited.

You can check if a certain item is in stock by clicking the product and selecting a store. Also be aware that not all items at IKEA Greece are online to view, which is why they encourage people to come to the store.

IKEA websites abroad can be accessed by going to www.ikea.com and selecting a country.

IKEA Greece Catalog in English and Greek

IKEA Greece typically begins distribution of the new catalog every year on or around August 30, a month later than other countries; it’s offered only in Greek and hand-delivered to all homes in Greece. However, the new IKEA catalog was late last year on September 20, 2013.

The 2015 IKEA Greece catalog will again be late this year, with an expected arrival date and online/iOS/Android availability on September 30, 2014.

The 2014 IKEA Greece catalog is no longer online.

There is no printed version in English. However, a similar presentation in English to the IKEA Greece catalog can be viewed online or downloaded at IKEA Ireland. See “2015 IKEA Ireland Online Catalogue.”

They are not identical, as each contains country-specific information and separate promotions, but both versions feature the same products with relatively the same layout. Take note that IKEA Greece and IKEA Ireland are owned by different companies, so the Irish catalog should only be used for translation purposes, not as an indicator of prices in Greece.

Saying and spelling IKEA (Ικεα) in Greek is the same in English.

Gift cards

IKEA offers a gift card or dorokarta in any amount between 5-500 euros. Perfect for students, baby and new parents, newlyweds or friends and relatives located elsewhere in Greece, as they can pick out what they want.

Delivery

IKEA delivers everywhere on mainland Greece and the Greek islands using independent contractors via regular or courier service. Shoppers can view a price list and make arrangements in person at the help desk located in the area after checkout and before the exit. Some staff speak English.

Customer service notes the condition of your items, then calculates costs based on number of items, weight and delivery location. Curbside delivery is customary, and an extra charge applies for door-to-door service.

Appointments are normally four-hour windows in morning, afternoon and evening, including Saturdays, and you can request that the Greek-speaking delivery person call an hour before arrival. Named recipients or an authorized representative (assigned via police-certified dilosi) must be home to receive items and should inspect them for damage before refusing or consenting to sign the receipt of satisfactory acceptance.

IKEA Greece offer furniture assembly on some items for a fee, as do independent contractors.

Why are IKEA prices in Greece so high?

In addition to being a year behind other countries in its offerings, IKEA Greece prices are often 15-300 percent higher than other stores worldwide.

When I made a direct inquiry to IKEA headquarters as to why prices in Greece are higher in spite of its proximity to Sweden, IKEA said that each franchise is entitled to set their own prices, either making products more affordable for consumers or earning more profit. The Fourlis Group — which owns the exclusive franchise rights for IKEA in Greece, Bulgaria and Cyprus — obviously chose themselves. “Fourlis profits up 15 percent at €5.6 million.”

IKEA Greece lowered prices in 2010 on some items as Bloomberg reported in, “Greeks get cheaper IKEA shelves, but was again selling the most expensive shelves by October 2013 and one of three countries that raised prices in the euro region even though unemployment is still more than 27 percent.

Want to work for IKEA in Greece?

In November 2012, it announced an employee salary cut of 8-15 percent, as is typical in the private sector where many began seeing reductions of up to 35 percent in late 2010.

The Fourlis Group maintains a ‘Careers’ database of job vacancies at: www.fourlisgroup-careers.gr

Non-EU citizens must have authorization to work in Greece. See, “How Americans/non-EU citizens can live and work in Greece.”

Sources

ΙΚΕΑ: Λιγότερες οι ζημιές στο α΄ εξάμηνο του 2013” — To Vima
Fourlis opens door to fourth IKEA store in Greece” – eKathimerini
Fourlis to invest 30 million euros” – eKathimerini
Fourlis secures 100 percent control of IKEA franchise in Bulgaria” – Fourlis
Ικανοποιητικά τα αποτελεσμάτα της ΙΚΕΑ για το τρίτο τρίμηνο, λέει ο Fourlis” – Ta Nea
ΙΚΕΑ: 10-12 καταστήματα μέχρι το 2013” – Imerisia
2010 IKEA Greece online catalogue
Δέκα ΙΚΕΑ έως το 2010 από τον όμιλο Φουρλή
ΙΚΕΑ στη Σόφια με ελληνική σφραγίδα” — Ta Nea
Και η ΙΚΕΑ συζητά deal στον Πειραιά” — To Vima

In the News

Greek retailer Fourlis Group nine-month profits down 32 percent” (November 2009) – Reuters
Downturn hits Fourlis’ IKEA sales” (February 2010) – Kathimerini
Greek furniture retailers following one-stop IKEA concept” — Kathimerini
Greek retailer Fourlis sees slump” — Economic Times
IKEA celebrates 10 years in Greece” — Kathimerini

Related posts

IKEA vs. IKA – there is a difference
IKEA Dubai vs. IKEA Athens” – Waiting for Skopelos
Name and shame: Fleecing and IKEA furniture delivery” – Greek Madness

23 Comments »

  dwain wrote @ October 20th, 2009 at 18:27

Merciful Zeus, another one? I literally had callouses from putting together an entire apartment’s worth of furniture last year. It’s not bad to put together a coffee table you bought that one weekend, but when you have beds, chairs, tables, armoires, and all those other things that most stores sell assembled to put together in one weekend, one cannot help but curse the Scandinavians for hell-spawn.

  Despina wrote @ January 4th, 2010 at 00:46

Heeej!

Äntligen =) Nu har de satt igång med att bygga Ikea i Ioannina =)
Jag undrar hur man kan söka jobb på Ikea i Ioannina, skulle jätte gärna vilja jobba där=) Hur gör man om man skulle vilja söka, någon som vet och kan hjälpa mig?

Mvh

Despina

Finally =) Now they have started to build Ikea in Ioannina =)
I wonder how you can apply for jobs at Ikea in Ioannina, I would really like to work there =) Do you know how I would search for this, someone who knows and can help me?

Kat Reply:

This question is already answered in the article above, near the end. Assuming you are an EU citizen, just follow the first link for the Fourlis Group under “Want to work for IKEA in Greece?” They list all the open vacancies.

If you are a non-EU citizen, you need a work permit before applying for any vacancies, and in that case would follow the second link under the same heading.

  Despina wrote @ January 4th, 2010 at 10:51

Tack för hjälpen. Nu får man hoppas på att det kommer upp lediga tjänster på Ikea i ioannina. Vet du om man måste kunna flytande grekiska i tal och skrift för att få jobba där?

Thank you! We will hope for vacancies at Ikea in Ioannina … Do you know if you have to be fluent in Greek, or is it sufficient that we speak fluent Swedish and write simple Greek?

Note from Kat: Months ago, there were several vacancies in Ioannina. All vacancies list requirements.

Future inquiries should be directed at the Fourlis Group; I do not represent them and have already given you the tools to help yourself. Good luck.

  Yannis wrote @ August 14th, 2010 at 19:28

Foreign companies get locked out of Crete (maybe other parts of Greece) unless they do joint ventures with powerful Greek companies that can grease the xenophobic wheels (Starbucks is a 50-50 joint venture with Marinopoulos, as is the Marinopoulos-Carrefour supermarkets). The supermarkets on Crete are all a single cartel anyway and do their buying (and probably their price fixing) together. Cartels fixing prices is one reason prices are so @#%^ stupid high in stupid Greece. The average Greek is getting screwed six ways for Sunday by illegal anti competitive collusion between companies and no-one does a damn thing about it, least of all the EU.

This was the big mistake McDonalds made – they foolishly went it alone and have had 2 stores close on Crete and have never had a store in the big tourist business area of the Chania old town where they would make an absolute killing from April to October. I’d say they most likely got screwed out of permits and tv advertising, an essential part of the McDonald’s business model. It’s telling to see how long you can wait to get your order in “Goodies” (Marinopoulos’s peculiarly Greek answer to chains like McDonalds) and how fast your order arrives in a well oiled McDonalds or Burger King in a more developed country. Goodies is s-l-o-w. You’ll never see “your order filled in 10 mins or it’s free” offers in Greece, they’d go broke in a week LoL!!!

Contrary to all the whining about globalisation, foreign companies are good for Greece, whatever we may think of their products. They bring rigorous training (Greek companies don’t do training) in much-needed skills like customer service and staff go on to take those skills into Greek companies. They also bring modern management and quality practices into the country. They provide goods and services at a level of efficiency that, frankly, Greeks on their own are incapable of providing, and they provide in-demand stuff for tourists, turning over more cash in the economy. Globalization and increased competition are good for an ossified basket case economy that is riddled with corruption and price fixing like Greece. But Greeks fear competition instead of embracing it. And Greeks can’t make a decent pizza to save their lives. Oh well.

  ernie wrote @ August 23rd, 2010 at 22:15

I need to furnish a house recently built on a island. I guess IKEA doesn’t deliver, can anyone help with suggestions on how to get a house full of furniture to where I want it to go?

Kat Reply:

There’s a misunderstanding. In the article under “Delivery,” the first sentence says that delivery is possible anywhere in Greece, which IKEA contracts via private movers or metafores. The challenge is, you must pick out your furniture and other items in person, then arrange it with the delivery desk situated after checkout. Why? Because last I checked, IKEA Greece does not allow you to place orders by phone or online.

Even if you did not deal with IKEA, you could hire a mover on your own and transport furniture from any store of your choice to anywhere in Greece.

  peter wrote @ August 24th, 2010 at 14:36

Hi Kat, there is a rumour that IKEA would build a “downsized” IKEA ot the island Paros, can you believe such a thing ?

Love your website, very useful.

Peter, Parikia Paros

Kat Reply:

Hi Peter,

There are two reasons I believe this is purely rumor.

First, Fourlis detailed its plan for the locations of new stores and the order in which they would open; I listed them the same way above in my article. Paros isn’t on the list and the Ioannina store is 10 months behind schedule. Second, they just posted H1 results that detail a 2.1-million loss (Reuters). This combined with the limited market on Paros and cost of doing business (real estate, construction, transport, storage, employees), it doesn’t make good financial sense.

Rumors about a Crete store have been circulating for 3 years. Is there a store there? Nope.

  The Stones wrote @ November 25th, 2010 at 11:32

When is IKEA going to open a store for those of us in central and western Greece? Northern Patras might be a good choice. Praktiker, Plaiso and Multirama are there already.

  dimitris wrote @ December 9th, 2010 at 14:48

pote tha anixei ikea sto iraklio? olo to akoume k olo den enigei. o kosmos to perimenei pws k pws.eine dinaton na min exei to iraklio mia toso megali agora ?

Note from Kat: As the post says, there are no definite plans to build an IKEA in Irakelio.

  MG wrote @ December 10th, 2010 at 10:50

Hello,
when will the IKEA in Ioannina be open?

Thanks!
Greetings

Kat Reply:

I updated the article yesterday with that information in the first paragraph. Fourlis said “end of 2010.” No further details were given, or I would have included them.

Thank you to stopping by, and all best.

  joan wrote @ December 16th, 2010 at 09:19

Please can we be told when the IKEA in Ioannina will be opened?

Kat Reply:

IKEA Ioannina opens on December 18.

  Athena wrote @ September 13th, 2011 at 19:37

My daughter and I were looking for products in the department where the beds are and my iphone 4 was stolen between 4:30 and 5:15 today September 13, 2011.

We were very upset as it was a matter of 5 minutes between the time we used it and when we realized it was missing.

We then went to speak to the head in charge Mr. Thanos Pantazaras, who could not be of much assistance. I was perplexed that he didn’t ask how he could contact us in case it was found. I had to ask him to write down our name.

This was an experience I do not want to relive in IKEA again. I wish you could have cameras everywhere, so as to review such crimes as they must frequently occur in such a huge shop. I am sorry to suggest that even a worker may be responsible for such a crime. I am sorry but without a review, how can we know it’s safe to enter your store again? This kind of occurance is something one never forgets. I am sorry that I have to make such a complaint.

Kat Reply:

Please send this letter to the IKEA location where it happened. Find the email address above.

I do not represent IKEA; I simply provide an English translation of practical information since the IKEA Greece website does not.

  Virginia wrote @ April 27th, 2012 at 14:11

This item on IKEA in Greece has been most helpful. It is a shame that Fourlis should have higher prices than other IKEA stores not in Greece.

IKEA goods are real value for money in the UK and I’m sure that if a more customer friendly approach was taken then IKEA in Greece would be more successful.

Buying online is the future and Fourlis should look to this option and also provide a reliable delivery service.

Kat Reply:

I agree with you on both counts.

Online shopping is still relatively new in Greece because the majority of households do not own a computer, do not have ADSL and distrust e-transactions.

Thanks for stopping in and leaving a comment.

  Pam wrote @ May 19th, 2013 at 02:07

Has anyone shipped a sofa or furniture to Crete (preferably Sitia) from Ikea Greece .

Kat Reply:

I have friends who come regularly to IKEA Athens and have furniture shipped to their home on Crete. They haven’t had problems, but be aware of the delivery fees by inquiring at the counter located near checkout BEFORE buying anything so you won’t be surprised.

  hoda wrote @ August 26th, 2013 at 03:58

the worst shop of ikea all over the world is in greece. we bought bed and from one week till now we sleep on the ground? our dresser is 24 sapfous voliarmany

  El wrote @ February 1st, 2014 at 09:10

Is there someone who could have bought 7 LINDMON blinds from the Greek IKEA Thessaloniki and I send them to me in Bulgaria? Because… we dont have this item in BG. Will pay all costs of purchase and delivery! Please, do me this favor! Pleace!

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