The first phase of the new Nicosia bus network kicked off on Saturday, with the transport ministry saying the second phase is due to begin at the end of February.

The new service, presented earlier this week by local bus operator Cyprus Public Transport, will expand bus services in the district to cover more areas and operate for longer hours with better connectivity.

The first phase has decentralised Solomos Square as Nicosia’s main bus hub, adding five more at Makarios Stadium, Strovolos, Nicosia General Hospital, Tamasos and Alambra.

CPT is also introducing 5G-powered internet in all of its buses and at its bus stops.

The ministry also said that the fare policy is changing to encourage more passengers to use a personalised Motion Card instead of one-use paper tickets, which will also cut boarding time.

“Most importantly, the service will introduce a night route for central points like the city centre, universities, hospitals, malls and bus depots,” the ministry said.

Night buses will initially operate on Fridays and Saturdays, with the possibility to expand to other areas and days, the ministry said.

It added that the new changes aim to offer better service to public transport users, and make buses a more attractive mode of transport.

Members of the public were advised to visit CPT’s website for more information on the new network and to download the Pame App, which offers real-time information about bus arrivals.