Over the past two months, Cyrpus has been gradually allowing in more tourists. However, for some countries, restrictions still apply. Which airlines are currently flying to Cyrpus, and what are the rules?
After what it deemed to be a successful handling of the COVID-19 pandemic, Cyprus has slowly been relaxing its borders. From June 9th, it allowed a handful of citizens from foreign countries to enter again. On June 20th, it welcomed back even more tourists, and on July 15th, it lifted restrictions even further.
However, when it comes to who is allowed where Cyprus is upholding some tough restrictions based on the traveler’s country of origin. That said, several airlines are now operating flights back to the country. Who are they?
Which airlines are flying to Cyprus?
A number of airlines have now begun commercial services back to Cyprus. Thanks to their country’s management of the pandemic, some were allowed back earlier than others. Countries like Bulgaria were on a low-risk entry list when borders reopened on June 9th, meaning their citizens could travel to Cyprus without the need for negative COVID-19 tests or quarantine. Bulgaria Air is offering flights to Larnaca three times per week on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays.
Other airlines that recently began flights to Cyprus include Emirates, which is now offering four weekly flights to Larnaca, and Turkish Airlines.
Additional airlines are currently operating to and from Larnaca International Airport include:
- Aegean Airlines;
- Blue Air;
- Corendon Airlines;
- Cyprus Airways;
- Edelweiss Air;
- Pegasus Airlines;
- Qatar Airways;
- Wizz Air; and
- Xiamen Airlines.
Airlines currently operating to Paphos International Airport include:
- Ryanair; and
Who is allowed to visit Cyprus?
To contain coronavirus transmission, Cyprus is allowing countries back under specific conditions. It has categorized individual states based on their rate of infection. Those countries in Category A on July 14th included places like Germany, Switzerland, and New Zealand. Passengers from these countries will have the most liberties upon entering Cyrpus. They do not need to present a negative COVID-19 test and will not have to quarantine.
Countries in Category B, as of July 14th, included France, Spain, Italy, and Australia. Passengers from these countries will be required to take a test and could need to isolate. In the first instance, anyone traveling from a Category B country should take a Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) test 72 hours before departure and must present negative results on arrival. Travelers fitting a particular requirement may also be selected to do a further test. While awaiting results, those passengers will self-isolate.
Finally, Category C countries currently have the most restrictions upon them. As of July 14th, the UK fell into this category, alongside Portugal, Sweden, and Serbia. These countries are deemed to pose an increased risk of infection and therefore, are required to carry out the following:
- The presentation of a negative PCR test taken at least 72 hours before departure;
- 14-day self-isolation.
Cyprus’ incentive to get tourism back
Though the restrictions on entry into Cyrpus may seem, well, restrictive, the country is monitoring the situation in individual countries, and re-categorizing travelers as circumstances change.
However, Cyprus has also been at the forefront of incentivizing tourists to return to the island. On July 2nd, the EU Commission approved an incentive scheme for Cyprus amounting to €6.3m ($7.2m) to support air transport to and from the country. Under the program, around 60 airlines will receive funding based on their load factor to promote tourism in the country.
Will you be flying to Cyprus soon? Let us know your thoughts in the comment.