By Andria Kades
Paphos airport has welcomed the first flight of Germania Airlines which is offering flights from five cities in Germany, Hermes airports said in a joint statement from the Cyprus Tourism Association (CTO) and the Paphos Regional Board of Tourism.
The German airline is offering flights from Berlin, Hamburg, Dusseldorf and Erfut to Paphos and from Munich to Larnaca. Some began operating earlier this week while all will be flying by April 1.
“With pleasant temperatures all year round, a wide range of top level hotels and a very good tourist infrastructure, Cyprus is an ideal holiday destination. We are very pleased that we can offer this attractive destination nonstop,” Germania CEO Karsten Balke said.
The move is expected to generate financial benefits for Paphos and for the island’s tourism, Paphos Regional Board of Tourism Executive Director Nasos Hadjigeorgiou said. “It will also contribute to the reduction of unemployment in the near future, mitigate the seasonality and promote the image of Paphos, worldwide,” he said.
On Wednesday, passengers taking the first flight from Hamburg to Paphos were greeted with folklore music and dancing at the baggage reclaim area in Paphos, and with a water arch salute for the aircraft employees.
“We are very happy with the airline’s decision and we look forward to working with Germania to make this operation a success,” Hermes Airport CEO Wes Porter said.
The Berlin-Paphos route will have one flight per week on Wednesdays, which began on March 25. The Hamburg-Paphos route will also have one flight per week, also on Wednesdays as of March 25.
The Dusseldorf-Paphos route begins on March 29 with two flights per week on Wednesdays and Sundays, and the Munich-Larnaca flight will be operated on Tuesdays with one flight per week as of March 31.
The Erfurt-Paphos route will have one flight per week on Wednesdays, starting from April 1.
The airline is currently expanding its operations in international markets, expanding its base at London-Gatwick Airport.
Earlier this month, a package of six incentives was signed between Hermes Airport and the Ministry of Communications to entice more airlines to the island. The three year agreement for both Larnaca and Paphos airports includes developing new (single) routes, development of winter traffic, discounts on landing fees at Cypriot airports, development through a Growth Bonus Plan on a net traffic growth for existing routes, and marketing support for the promotion of Cyprus by the airlines.