British travelers who have been vaccinated against Covid-19 can visit Cyprus as of May 1, the Cypriot government announced this week on the back of a similar agreement it has inked with Israel allowing Israeli tourists to enter on April 1.
The government said on Thursday that it had informed UK officials that starting May 1, travelers who have completed vaccination would not be required to self-isolate or to present a negative PCR test result for Covid-19 upon arrival.
It should be noted that though Cyprus will begin accepting visitors from the UK as of May 1, Britain will still have travel restrictions for non-essential outbound travel in place until at least May 17. Britain’s Home Secretary Priti Patel has repeatedly said that it is “too early” to book a holiday abroad.
“We believe it’s another step in the right direction so we can ensure stability and a sense of safety to allow travelers to start planning their holidays for this summer,” said Deputy Tourism Minister Savvas Perdios.
The minister added, however, that Cyprus still had the right to conduct random checks at airports, including on people who have been vaccinated, and that health protocols, including mask-wearing and safe distancing must be observed.
British tourists allowed admission into the country will be required to have been vaccinated with two doses of any vaccine approved by the European Medicines Agency (EMA).
The second dose must be done at least seven days before travel.
Vaccines currently approved by the EMA are those by Pfizer-BioNTech, Oxford AstraZeneca and Moderna.
However, it is still unclear how visitors to Cyprus will prove vaccination.
Relying heavily on tourism, Cyprus recorded a slump in foreign arrivals in 2020, which were down by 631,609 from nearly 4 million in 2019. The UK is a key source market for the Mediterranean island nation, with more than 1 million UK travelers visiting in 2019.