Cyprus hotels are given a financial lifeline as they anticipate their establishments to fill up with Cypriots during the August holidays.
Traditionally most Cypriots take their annual leave mid-August when most businesses close down for a week from the 15 August, marking a religious holiday for Greek Orthodox Christians.
In comments to the website Stockwatch, the Cyprus Hotel Association Director-General Philokypros Roussounides said hotels expect to reach 75% capacity thanks to Cypriots opting for a staycation.
Cypriot holidaymakers have snubbed travelling abroad due to the coronavirus pandemic and are encouraged by a state-sponsored scheme to enjoy cheaper stays at local hotels.
As part of their scheme to encourage vaccinations against COVID-19, authorities have introduced a scheme allowing vaccinated Cypriots to enjoy a state-discounted holiday.
A quarter of the island’s hotels and tourist enterprises participate in the government discount scheme for jabbed vacationers.
Some 220 hotels, mainly four-star or below, have joined the scheme that runs until the end of August.
Hotels offer stays at a maximum of €52 a night per room, with the government 35% subsidy.
The subsidy is activated once the stay is paid for a minimum of three nights at €156.
As the scheme requires holidaymakers to book a minimum of three nights, many Cypriots, encouraged by the low cost, book at least a week’s stay.
Roussounides: “Tourist resorts in the Famagusta district will see the lion’s share of the action, as they top Cypriots’ preferences.
“Ayia Napa and Protaras will also benefit from an increase in arrivals of Russian tourists”.
Roussounides is satisfied the sponsored holiday scheme for Cypriots is paying off, noting that Cypriots have been given very reasonable prices for some of the best hotels, which offer excellent service.
“Encouraging locals to spend their holidays at Cyprus hotels will continue to pay off in the coming years, as Cypriots will now be adding Cypriot hotels to their list of options for their future holidays.”
He argued that Cyprus has more than just the sun and sea to offer, as the mountainous areas are full of hidden treasures.