© CyprusTourismNews | Early start to the 2018 season

The tourist season in Cyprus will start earlier this year due to the timing of Easter and optimism is high according to a report in local Cypriot newspaper Phileleftheros.

The western Christian Easter period starts towards the end of March this year with the Orthodox Easter a short while later – starting in the first week of April. This means that hotels are preparing to welcome the first tourists for the season in little over a month from today. Hoteliers are pushing to complete their renovations as soon as possible in order to be ready to open their doors in time.

Hotel operators are said to be optimistic about a further increase in arrivals for 2018 and expect to break the 3.6 million tourist record set last year.

The report went on to note that tour operators estimate that the rise in tourist numbers will be around 5% – 10%, if the increase in airline seats and the creation of new beds is taken into consideration. Cyprus Travel Agents Chairman Vasilis Stamataris said there would be a slight increase in the tourist flow, noting that already this year the number of reservations has increased compared to last year. “The trend will continue rising for 2018, but at a slower pace than last year’s record. The month of January is a month in which the contracts are being recalculated and signed and based on that data it shows there will be an increase in tourist traffic of 5% -10%.”

PASYXE’s General Manager, Zacharias Ioannidis, said the number of hotels that will operate from March will be much higher than last year to meet the increased demand due to the arrival of tourists for Easter. “Throughout March many hotels will choose to open, with the majority preparing to accept tourists around the end of the month.”

It was noted that 2017 was a year that broke all the records for Cypriot tourism with arrivals increasing by 14.6%. Based on the survey of travelers from the Statistical Office of Cyprus, tourists from the United Kingdom grew by 8.3% and remained top with the most arrivals, while Russia recorded an increase of 5.5%. A major increase was recorded in 2017 in tourist arrivals from Israel, which grew by 76.1%. Finally, a significant increase was also recorded from Germany with arrivals up 52.2%.