Cyprus vows to cover costs for tourists infected with coronavirus while on the island

Cyprus has said it will cover all costs for anyone who tests positive for coronavirus while on holiday in a bid to bring tourists back to the island.

The Cypriot government said it will pay lodging, food, drink and medication for patients and their families. Patients will only have to pay for the taxi ride to the airport and the flight home.

In a public letter, the Cypriot government added that a 100-bed hospital will cater exclusively to foreigners who test positive for Covid-19.

And a 500-room "quarantine hotel" has been designated for relatives or people from the same group as someone who has tested positive for the disease.

The letter has been sent out to foreign governments, airlines and tour operators outlining strict health and safety protocols to reassure visitors coming to the island.

Around 13 per cent of Cyprus’ economy is directly reliant on tourism. This year, the country expects to lose as much as 70 per cent of the €2.6m (£2.34m) in tourism-related revenue.

Cyprus boasts one of the lowest coronavirus ratios per capita having tested more than 10 per cent of its population.

However people in the UK are currently not included on a list of countries from which citizens are able to fly to Cyprus.

Beaches have been left almost deserted due to the coronavirus outbreak. Credit: AP

How will it work?

International air travel to Cyprus will begin from June 9, initially with passengers from 19 countries.

Passengers will be required to take a Covid-19 test three days prior to departure.

That measure will be lifted for a further 13 countries on June 20, including Germany, Greece, Finland, Malta and Israel.

A water park has been left empty as the peak season approaches. Credit: AP

They will then fill out a “Covid-19 traveller declaration” stating all their travels 14 days prior to their Cyprus trip and that they have neither shown any coronavirus symptoms 72 hours before departure or come into contact with anyone infected 14 days before.

Upon arrival in Cyprus, people who are not in the same travel group must keep at least two metres apart outdoors and three metres apart indoors.

Sunbeds will be spaced two metres apart and regularly disinfected.

Hotel staff will have to wear masks and rooms disinfected upon every departure.

Restaurants, bars, cafes and pubs will be cleaned and tables at these establishments will be separated by two metres, with a maximum of 10 guests.

It remains to be seen whether UK citizens will be able to visit Cyprus this year. An estimated one million Britons fly to Cyprus each year, making it one of the country's main visitors.

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