articles | 14 April 2022

Cyprus lifting travel rules in tourism boost

Cyprus is lifting most of its COVID-19 travel restrictions from 18 April, scrapping its passenger locator form (flight pass) and colour-coded country risk assessment, the tourism ministry said.

After two years of travel rules, from Monday, Cyprus no longer requires arrivals to complete a passenger locator form before boarding an aircraft, and countries will not be categorised by their COVID-risk level.

Vaccinated passengers are no longer required to take any action to board a flight to the Mediterranean island, but unvaccinated travellers are required to carry a negative 24-hour rapid test or 72-hour PCR test.

Upon arrival, quarantine and testing requirements for unvaccinated passengers coming from high-risk countries will also be lifted.

Vaccinated travellers must present proof of being inoculated with a European Union-approved jab.

“All of us would like to take this opportunity to thank our loyal guests for making Cyprus one of the most popular European holiday destinations in 2021,” said a deputy tourism ministry statement on Thursday.

“We are delighted to be making travel to our island even more frictionless and look forward to welcoming you all again this year,” it added.

Currently, Cyprus uses a three-coloured system (green, red, grey), with only unvaccinated passengers subjected to compulsory testing and restrictions – before and after arrival –according to their country of origin.

Cyprus’ decision to lift most restrictions comes after tourism stakeholders pressured authorities to relax them, fearing losing out to rival destinations, which have scrapped all COVID-19 entry requirements.

Tourism-reliant Cyprus saw a 51 per cent drop in tourists last year compared to the pre-pandemic 2019 record of four million.

On Wednesday, Cyprus registered 1,414 news coronavirus cases and two deaths.

Since the pandemic started in March 2020, total infections have reached 462,783 (almost half the population) and 984 deaths.

Source: Financial Mirror

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