By Annette Chrysostomou
Revenues from tourism in Cyprus dropped by 14.6 per cent in June this year compared to the corresponding month last year, due to shorter stays and a drop from Russia.
Income amounted to €259 million in June 2015 and €303.2 million in June 2014. June’s loss is estimated to be entirely due to reduced revenue from Russian tourists plus shorter holidays.
On the basis of the results of their passenger survey, Eurostat measured a significant decrease of 6.1 per cent in income from tourism in the first half of the year, which fell from €778.7 million to €730.9 million.
The decrease for June can be attributed to the drop in tourist arrivals from Russia by 23 per cent, but also because Russian tourists, who are second in tourist arrivals by country, spend less. The per capita/per day spending fell due to the economic crisis in the country and the consequent decline in the rouble exchange rate to the euro. At the same time, the average length of stay fell to 9.6 days from 10.1.
Tourists from the UK who are the largest group in tourist arrivals also spend less. The spending per capita fell to €855.76 per stay in June this year from €942.07 a year earlier, Eurostat reported.
The decrease in the average length of stay is the primary reason for the decline in tourism revenue in June, believes the Cyprus Tourism Organisation.
“The decrease in revenues resulted from the decrease of 13.3 per cent in expenditure per traveller (from €886 in June 2014 to €769 in June 2015), which in turn was mainly due to a decrease of 8.9 per cent in average length of stay and secondly to a reduction of daily spending by 4.8 per cent”, the CTO said in a statement.
The CTO notes that a reduction in the average stay was recorded from all countries except for Norway (+ 2.3 per cent), Denmark (+ 4.6 per cent), France (+ 7.0 per cent) and the Netherlands (+5.2 per cent).
Concluding, the CTO stressed that the strongest factor that could bring about positive change and improve image would be improve service levels. “Through upgrading services tourist satisfaction will improve and with it revenues from the tourism sector will rise,” the organisation noted.