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The importance of the fullness of the flights that will arrive in Cyprus this year, in the context of the efforts for mitigation of the great losses from the Ukrainian crisis, was stressed yesterday in the Parliament, since, as noted, a possible increase of the fullness by 10% will equate to additional 250 thousand arrivals compared to last year.
The number is impressive but small to fill the gap left by the Russian and Ukrainian markets, of which, as Deputy Minister of Tourism Savvas Perdios told the Committee on Trade yesterday, while he is in quarantine, 800 thousand tourists were expected this year. . Now, said Mr. Perdios, we are working with the pilot scenario, based on which we will have zero arrivals from the specific markets, warning that difficulties in the flow of Russian tourists are expected to exist in the coming years. “We do not know how many years it will take for the Russian market to return,” he said, urging everyone to adapt to the new trends and new markets that Cyprus is trying to attract.
READ ALSO: & nbsp; 370 thousand from Russia – Ukraine cancel their arrival
To deal with the crisis, he reiterated that in consultation with all tourism partners, an emergency action plan is underway, with moves to other markets, which will not but fully cover the losses. “We are not going to replace 800 thousand arrivals in a few weeks,” he said.
As part of the actions of the State Department, Mr. Perdios reiterated that all the credits for advertising that existed for Russia and Ukraine have already been channeled to markets that have a perspective for this year, recording as such & nbsp; Germany, Israel, Poland, Austria, Switzerland, Italy, France, Sweden and Hungary. As he said above, due to the preparations made in recent years, this year will have about 20 to 40 flights each week, noting for comparison purposes that about 100 flights a week were expected from Russia. This, he said, means that with targeted advertising from everyone we will be able to make up for some numbers that will be lost by Russia and Ukraine.
In this context, the Undersecretary highlighted the importance of the completeness of flights to Cyprus. As he said, the average occupancy of the aircraft last year, according to data from Hermes Airports, was 70% and if this year we manage to raise the percentage to 85% and 90%, this alone without any increase in routes will bring an additional 200 to 250 thousand. positions in relation to what we expected.
The above was confirmed by the senior director of Aviation Development of Hermes Airports Maria Kouroupi, claiming that if we manage to increase the occupancy rate around 10% we can talk about 300,000 to 350,000 passengers, in tourist arrivals, that is, it could be “saved” 30-40% of the traffic we lost from Ukraine and Russia. The increased fullness can also be helped by the energy crisis, since, as Ms. Kouroupi said, due to the large increases in oil prices, it is difficult for companies to add new flights and try to maximize existing flight schedules, filling planes. According to Ms. Kouroupi, in total for this year we will have 10 million seats to Cyprus, from 38 countries and 50 airlines.
Mr. Perdios announced extraordinary collaborations and advertising with travel organizers and new collaborations with airlines. There is ongoing co-operation with the Ministry of Transport, he said, revealing that Cyprus has already asked the EU to extend the easing of state aid rules. He also noted that efforts are being made for further development of the cruise sector and hinted that there will be plans to strengthen domestic tourism this year as well. He agreed with the remarks that the removal of CyprusFlightPass and domestic restrictions would help the whole effort. & Nbsp; & nbsp; & nbsp;