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In a bid to welcome travellers and boost tourism, The Republic of Cyprus has announced that it will bear all costs of visitors in case they get infected with Coronavirus whilst touring the country. By Upasana Singh

 

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Countries across the globe are experimenting with new ways and ideas to woo tourists. As lockdown restrictions are easing in several parts of the world, people are being encouraged to travel through various incentives such as countries willing to pay a part of the travel costs. Cyprus is the latest country to announce its travel plans. The island in the eastern Mediterranean Sea has pledged to cover all costs for any individual who tests positive for COVID-19 while holidaying there.

In a letter signed by the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Minister of Transport and Deputy Minister of Tourism, the government claims that it would pay for accommodation, medication, and food for infected patients and their families. As per reports, the patient will only need to cover their flight costs for their way back home and the taxi ride to the airport.

 

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Officials have stated that a 100-bed hospital is to be set aside specifically for tourists who test positive. Besides, “quarantine hotels” for the patients’ families will also be arranged.

At present, Cyprus is planning to reopen its airports from June 9 to countries that have been considered low-risk zones, such as Germany, Greece, Malta, and Israel. Nineteen such countries have been added to the list and approved for tourism.

Initially, travellers will have to provide certifications to prove that they have tested negative for the virus, within 72 hours of arriving in the country. They will undergo certain safety measures and health check-ups such as thermal screening upon arrival. A ‘COVID-19 Traveller Declaration’ form will have to be filled, specifying all details of travel over the previous 14 days. Whilst in Cyprus, tourists must also be ready for random temperature checks, which will be done free of cost.

 

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Tourism accounted for about 15 per cent of Cyprus’ GDP last year. Due to the global pandemic, the economy of the country has been severely affected. The new plan is part of a package of measures that have been devised to draw visitors back to the island, which has reported considerably few cases of Coronavirus.

Related: #SomeGoodNews: Greece To Welcome Tourists After Victory Against Coronavirus