Cyprus to welcome Brits back by July 15 with cheap deals, says tourism minister
Brits will be able to travel to Cyprus again for a holiday from July 15, the country's deputy tourism minister has announced.
Not only that, but cheap deals and bargains are to be expected to entice international tourists back to the island for the summer season.
Cyprus has managed to keep coronavirus cases to under 1,000, after stopping all flights and closing their borders in March.
Speaking exclusively to Sun Online Travel, the island’s tourism deputy tourism minister Savvas Perdios said he foresaw flights being resumed to the Mediterranean hotspot by July 15 and underscored the importance of the UK market to Cypriots.
He said: "The UK is our biggest market, it’s massively important to us, and the situation there is improving all the time.
"In a few weeks from now, by mid-July, flights will be possible from the UK to Cyprus … 15th July sounds very reasonable."
Mr Perdios, who is the hotspot’s chief tourism policy maker, also predicted heavy discounting as the price war among tour operators intensifies.
He added: "There are going to be very good deals for Brits this summer I am certain of that, not just in Cyprus but the Mediterranean in general.
"We’ve been in contact with tour operators for the last two months at least, talking to TUI, Jet2, etc.
He added: "“The reason the new deals haven’t come up yet is because nobody knew when, exactly, they were opening.
“The rates, the deals, the packages are being finalised now."
“Now that things are a little bit clearer and destinations are opening, tour operators feel it's possible to save a small part of the summer even at the last moment."
We've rounded up some cheap Cyprus deals on the market already, with bargain flights and package holidays:
- Seven nights in Airbnb flat with contactless check-in near Ayia Napa on July 20 - £97pp
- Seven nights in beach-front flat with Airbnb on July 20 - £110pp
- Seven nights in Airbnb flat with pool on July 19 - £144pp
- Seven nights in Paphos with return flights from London Stansted on July 27 - £188pp
- Seven nights in Larnaca with return flights from London Luton on July 23 - £243pp
It is worth noting that the UK still advises against all non-essential travel abroad, and is enforcing two-week quarantines on all arrivals into Britain.
Both of these measures could be lifted by next month, however.
The island, which welcomes around 1.3 million Brits every year, has also promised to pay all expenses if visitors contract coronavirus while they are on holiday.
Quarantine hotels have also been set up to accommodate relatives of those who fall sick.
But Brits might still have to take a test or carry proof they are Covid-19 negative when they arrive at Cyprus’ airports.
Before the coronavirus outbreak the Greek Cypriot government had announced plans to clean up the island’s tourist image with an overhaul of infamous party resorts like Ayia Napa.
But the prospect of that happening now is slim, as he added: "We don’t have the privilege of being choosy.
"This year about types of holidays or source markets. We will go for whatever is available and definitely the UK, as ever, is a massive target for us."
Holidays to Europe and the Caribbean could happen as soon as next month with air bridges being considered by the government.
Air bridges, an agreement between two countries which would allow quarantine-free travel, are being debated to allow summer holidays for Brits once again.
Spain, Italy, Greece and Portugal are all thought to be high on the priority list.
Source: The Sun