Flights to Cyprus are mostly half empty but authorities hope to see traffic at its airports pick up in the coming weeks, as travel lockdowns introduced to stem the spread of COVID-19 are gradually being lifted.
In a Tweet, Transport Minister Yiannis Karousos said that Cyprus has seen some 101,338 passengers pass through Cyprus airports so far in July.
He said airlines are carrying on average 55% of normal passenger capacity.
Karousos said that some 55,894 arrivals and 45,494 departures were recorded on a total of 1,067 flights.
He noted that the average capacity of incoming flights was at 60% and for outbound 49%.
In a communication with the Financial Mirror, the Transport Ministry said that July 2020 figures are a distant cry from the same month last year due to COVID-19 restrictions, but figures will pick up in the coming weeks.
In July 2019, Cyprus saw some 1,457,079 passengers pass through its airports with 733,116 arrivals and 723,963 departures being recorded.
Ministry press officer Adonis Taliadoros said that according to official calculations they expect to see a total of 180,000 passengers in July, with numbers picking up in August to 360,000.
“While we started off with just a handful of daily flights carrying a few hundred passengers when we opened the airports in June, today we have about 6,000 passengers a day on average.
Traffic is set to increase, especially after 1 August when the United Kingdom will be added to the safe list as a category B country”.
He added that a number of airliners are adding more destinations to their flight schedule, including some that were not included before the coronavirus outbreak.
“We will have direct flights to France, two airports in Denmark, and it is the first time in decades that we have so many destinations in Germany, from where we will be seeing a significant number of passengers,” said Taliadoros.
Cyprus allows entry to a restricted number of countries based on their coronavirus data – 21 in Category A – no COVID-19 test in needed and 22 Category B countries from where visitors must test positive before arriving.