Cyprus opens doors to vaccinated British tourists

WION Web Team
Nicosia, Cyprus Published: Mar 05, 2021, 05:44 PM(IST)

Cyprus opens its doors Photograph:( AFP )

Story highlights

The Mediterranean island's vital tourism industry had otherwise been devastated due to the coronavirus pandemic -- with arrivals slumping to 631,609 in 2020 from nearly four million in 2019.

Cyprus will open its doors from May 1 to British tourists who have been vaccinated against Covid.

The Mediterranean island's vital tourism industry had otherwise been devastated due to the coronavirus pandemic -- with arrivals slumping to 631,609 in 2020 from nearly four million in 2019.

Britain is the island's largest market for tourists, making up a third of its arrivals in 2019,

"We informed the British government that as of May 1, we would facilitate the arrival of British citizens immunised with EU-licenced vaccines to enter Cyprus with no negative Covid-19 test and no quarantine," Tourism Minister Savvas Perdios said, quoted by the state-funded Cyprus News Agency.

He added the policy was subject to the British government's Covid-19 restrictions, which currently ban international travel.

The announcement comes after Cyprus and Israel agreed a deal last month allowing vaccinated citizens of the two countries to travel each way without limitations, once passenger flights resume.

"This is a very important development for tourism and follows the arrangement with Israel, as they are two of Cyprus' main tourist markets," said Perdios.

Under the Cypriot government's plan, UK citizens who have received the second dose of a Covid vaccine at least seven days before travelling would be allowed entry, but could still be subject to random testing at airports.

Britons would also still have to comply with health protocols such as mandatory mask-wearing and social distancing.

The Republic of Cyprus has so far recorded 232 coronavirus deaths and 36,004 infections.

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