Russian Tourism in Cyprus Up by 60%

Fears of having fewer tourists from Russia can be put to rest for now, as more Russians are set to flock the island this summer leading the way for smaller markets to follow suit. Based on arrivals and summer reservations so far, the Cyprus Tourism Organisation (CTO) has every reason to believe this year could be another great season, InCyprus reports.

CTO Deputy General Manager Annita Demetriadou told Phileleftheros that the total number of Russian reservations this summer is up by a whopping 60%, while Brits are also showing a 15% increase. According to InCyprus, one of the reasons for this high jump in Russian tourists coming to Cyprus has to do with public holidays in the bear country this month, as well as in Ukraine, where travellers prefer to take their trips abroad by lumping together a number of breaks. Last year there were over one million tourists from Britain which remains the top market while 524,823 arrivals from Russia ranked that country second. And this year, the number of flights and plane seats between Cyprus and Russia is already up for the season. Although there is less confidence seen in German and Swedish markets, there has been no indication that these countries would show any decrease in arrivals. On the other hand, smaller markets including Israel and Lebanon and other central European countries are all showing a steady incline, according to Demetriadou. But Cyprus tourism is not without uncertainties.

Experts recently told The Cyprus Weekly that the big bet is not the summer season but the question remains whether recent increases can be sustained beyond October. They also argue that it will take a concerted effort to achieve good results all year round, and both the business sector as well as public and state agencies have to work together and take risks by not shutting down during slower periods. Other critics have pointed out that road construction projects and lack of concrete plans for the winter season could harm rather than boost overall efforts.