Tourist arrivals to Cyprus to reach 75% of 2019 high, ACTE says.
Tourist arrivals to Cyprus in 2022 will reach 70%-75% of levels recorded in 2019, the Association of Cyprus Tourist Enterprises (ACTE) estimates, while the hotels' occupancy for July and August is seen around 70%-90%, with higher occupancy levels recorded in Paphos.
Chrisemily Psilogeni, General Manager of ACTE, answering CNA's questions, said however that the situation is highly volatile therefore forecasts are risky. Based on the numbers of arrivals recorded so far, which reached 1.2 million in June, down by 25% from 2019 and Hermes Airports estimates, expecting a total passenger traffic of 8.7 million for 2022, which corresponds to 78% of 2019 passenger traffic, "a forecast of 70%-75% of 2019 arrivals may be indicative for this year," she said.
She further said that for the months of July and August, the average occupancy of hotel units is estimated to range between 70%-90%. Occupancy differs by province and hotel category, she noted, with Paphos having higher occupancy levels, as it is traditionally a top choice for British tourists, as Britain is Cyprus’ biggest tourism market, she said.
The majority of quests staying in Cyprus hotels are tourists from the UK, Israel, Germany, Poland, Scandinavia, Greece, France and Austria, Psilogeni said, adding that also Cypriots in big numbers have chosen to spend their holidays in the island, due to the increase in air ticket prices and the problems with flight delays and cancellations occurring at international airports.
Regarding 2023, Psilogeni projects that it will be a difficult year, although it is still early to say. "We believe that 2023 will also be a particularly difficult year, mainly due to the prices of air tickets which may increase further, if the upcoming EU Fit for 55 Package is also taken into account, which will significantly affect us as an island destination, whose tourism is almost completely dependent on air connectivity", ACTE's GM noted. She also said "that is why we welcome the actions of the Minister of Transport, Communications and Works, Yannis Karoussos, to mitigate the impact on the country from the specific development".
At the same time, the lack of staff is also a cause for concern, resulting in long delays and cancellations at many important airports for Cyprus, she said, adding that inflation will affect potential tourists, as well.