Deputy Minister of Tourism Kostas Koumis on Thursday expressed great satisfaction with the outcomes of the meetings held during this week in London, in the contex of the annual World Travel Market (WTM).
The set target to increase flight availability to Cyprus from key players in the British tourism market has been achieved, the Deputy Minister said in the announcement. Moreover, the minister explained that more than 35 appointments were scheduled before his arrival in the British capital, something which, along with the influx of industry professionals to Cyprus’ booths at the conference, are considered indicators of positive prospects for Cypriot tourism in 2024.
Speaking to the Cyprus News Agency (CNA) just before his departure from London, the Deputy Minister of Tourism stated that “we are leaving London and WTM exceptionally satisfied with all the contacts we had”. “We came here with the purpose and goal of achieving a reasonable increase in the available seats to our country, and we have succeeded; hence, we are very pleased,” he added.
According to Koumis, “the decision of the giants in the British tourism market to extend their summer flight schedules until November 15 is very encouraging for Cyprus tourism, as it helps our efforts to extend the tourist season”. The Deputy Minister then highlighted specific agreements reached during the WTM. “We consider it extremely important news for our country’s tourism that easyJet has decided to operate flights from Belfast, Northern Ireland; it was something that the market had been demanding,” Koumis said. “This demand has essentially been satisfied. The introduction of of flights from Glasgow, Scotland is also very important,” he added. At the same time, he stated that “we welcome British Airways’ decision to convert routes from Gatwick to Larnaca into year-round flights”. This, Koumis said, “is another piece of news that also helps our efforts to extend the tourist season, with the ultimate goal of transforming Cyprus into a year-round tourist destination”. Koumis was accompanied at the exhibition by senior officials from the Deputy Ministry of Tourism.
Cypriot exhibitors consisted of 55 tourism businesses and tourism organisations, including the Cyprus Hoteliers Association (Pasyxe), the Association of Cyprus Tourist Enterprises (Stek), and the Association of Cyprus Travel Agents (ACTA), among others. Apart from meetings with tourism organisations and airlines, Koumis also had contact with the Minister of Tourism of Greece, Olga Kefalogianni, with whom they exchanged views on the course of tourism, discussing methods to enhance cooperation between the two countries. Additionally, Koumis gave interviews to foreign and expatriate media.
Meanwhile, on Wednesday, in a modest ceremony, the Deputy Minister of Tourism honoured fellow countryman John (Yiannis) Christodoulou as a sign of honour and recognition for organising the successful “Love Cyprus” competition by the Yianis Christodoulou Foundation. The competition gave young people the opportunity to better know Cyprus and understand more deeply the importance of the tourism sector, participating in a photo and film competition.
Finally, the Deputy Minister of Tourism also mentioned that further developments regarding the placement of new routes by other airlines are expected in the coming weeks.