Cyprus tourism expects a full recovery in 2023 after the island’s airports recorded the largest passenger traffic in February.
According to Cyprus airports operator Hermes Airports, Larnaca and Paphos airports had more passenger traffic in February 2023 than the record year of 2019.
Hermes announced that 454,000 passengers passed through the island’s airports, an increase of 10% compared to the same month in pre-COVID 2019.
Some 315,830 passengers travelled through Larnaca Airport, a jump of 114% from 2022 and 5% compared to 2019.
Accordingly, 138,778 passengers went through Paphos Airport in February, registering a 58% increase from 2022 and 26% compared to 2019.
The top travel markets were Greece, the United Kingdom, Israel, Poland, and Germany, corresponding to approximately 70% of the total passenger traffic, with a nearly 80% load factor.
Compared to February 2019, 11 new destinations were introduced, such as Paris, Prague, Rome, and Marseilles, replacing the loss of the markets of Russia and Ukraine due to the war.
Hermes Airports senior manager Maria Kouroupi said that Cyprus’ air connectivity is the driving force of the tourism industry.
“We are proud that the efforts made during the previous years have borne fruit, whilst the very positive results of February reaffirm people’s desire to travel as well as the fact that Cyprus is gradually winning odds on becoming a year-round destination”.
Kouroupi added that Hermes is confident that this upward trend will continue in the coming months, expediting the recovery of the tourism sector.
Last year ended with 9.2 million passengers passing through Cyprus’ airports, approximately 82% of passenger traffic in 2019.
Kouroupi had told media that the goal for 2023 is to push arrivals to the record-breaking levels of 2019, when Cyprus welcomed 3.97 million tourists.