Covid-19 vaccinations are the only hope for Cyprus’ tourism, Famagusta hoteliers said on Saturday.
In light of the summer period, the Famagusta branch of the Cyprus Hotel Association, Pasyxe, said the vaccination plan must continue at a greater scale so that the island can be classified in the green category to “become a safe and attractive destination for our traditional [tourist] markets but also the new ones we aim to attract”.
To date, Cyprus falls under the ‘dark red’ category based on the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) as it recorded a 14-day cumulative Covid-19 diagnosis rate higher than 500, at 621.1.
“It is now clear that if Cyprus does not turn green on the map we should not expect tourism,” Pasyxe said.
This also applies for the main tourist markets, Britain and Russia, with the association expressing hope that their epidemiological situation will improve soon and they can be classified in the green category as well.
The British government is not allowing holiday travel until May 17 at the earlier and even that is not yet certain, while expected protocols foresee a ten-day mandatory self-isolation period for any British nationals who return from holidays unless the country belongs in the green category, Pasyxe explained.
Meanwhile, Cyprus-Russia flights are reportedly in the pipeline.
“We expect the Russian government to allow tourist trips to Cyprus soon and charter flights to be launched, so that the normal flow of tourists can begin,” the announcement added.
There are no indications on when organised trips to Cyprus from other countries including Scandinavia, Poland and Ukraine will resume.
According to Pasyxe, tourism related professionals including hotel and restaurant staff must also get vaccinated soon.
The branch also called on the government to allow Cypriots to stay at local hotels, which is currently forbidden.