Real Estate Specialist
Ercan Airport has the opportunity to
serve up to 10 million passengers a year.
20 июля, рядом с турецкой частью Nicosia on Northern Cyprus, completely renovated Ercan Airport opens. Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the President of Turkey, was present at the opening, and his plane was the first to meet the new airport after the completion of the flight test program.
Ercan Airport, located 20 km from Nicosia, can serve up to 10 million passengers per year. This impressive project cost a total of 450 million euros. In terms of estimated passenger traffic, Ercan will surpass Dalaman Airport, which is well known to tourists, and second only to three other airports in Turkey.
The new terminal of Ercan Airport covers an area of 128 thousand square meters. Its runway, which is 3,200 meters long and 45 meters wide, can accommodate even wide-body aircraft. Passengers will enjoy 60 check-in counters in the departure observation area, as well as 44 passport control points: 24 for departures and 20 for arrivals.
Flights to Northern Cyprus will be cheaper!
The Minister of Transport of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus is confident that the opening of the new airport after the global reconstruction is not only a major active development of tourism in the region, but also will serve to increase revenue for the country. This innovation also implies a reduction in the cost of air tickets from Turkey to Northern Cyprus.
Tourist flow in Northern Cyprus: where and how many tourists come from?
Currently, Northern Cyprus can only be reached by air through Turkish airports, as there is no direct airline from other countries yet. Air flows are mainly made up of Turkish citizens (80%), Between January and May 2023, Northern Cyprus was visited by 450 thousand tourists from Turkey and 127 thousand citizens from other countries: Iranians, Germans, British and Kazakhs.
The new Ercan airport is expected to target these countries and possibly attract some of the tourists from Europe who currently use land transport.
However, overland travelers arriving via transit traffic with the Republic of Cyprus make up a significant proportion of all tourists. For the period from January to May 2023, the number of foreigners who arrived in this way amounted to 785,000. Greece, England, Romania, Bulgaria, Poland and Russia are among the top 6 countries for overland arrivals.
Northern Cyprus has not yet reached the pre-pandemic levels of tourist flow.
Northern Cyprus has a great potential for attracting tourists. However, statistics from January-May 2023 show that the average tourist occupancy rate is only 33%, which is less than in the same period of the previous year, when 44% was recorded in hotels.
The reasons are the increased exchange rate, the second round of presidential elections in Turkey and the consequences of the February earthquake. Since the main tourist flow to Northern Cyprus is still from Turkey.
Compared to the figures before the pandemic, 391 thousand tourists arrived in 2019 (not counting guests from Turkey). Of these, 16.5 thousand are Russians. 2 million visits were made to Northern Cyprus through the overland trip, of which almost 130 thousand were Russians.
Northern Cyprus is ready for a larger flow of tourists from Russia.
During the recovery of international flights after the pandemic, travel companies are actively resuming their work in Northern Cyprus. This will attract more tourists from Russia and the CIS countries.
Before the pandemic, most tourists traveled to Northern Cyprus via Larnaca Airport and overland transportation, mostly day trips. Such excursions continue, but now they start at airports in Turkey.
Сунай Сертель, руководитель одной из туристических компаний, считает, что инфраструктура острова привлечет больше туристов. Например, на острове есть отели с системой «все включено», знакомые россиянам и казахстанцам, хотя их количество пока не так велико — всего 10-12 объектов.
Another advantage of Northern Cyprus is its spacious sandy beaches, which are not crowded with tourists. Cyprus is known for its clear sea and beaches. In addition, Russians do not need a visa to visit Northern Cyprus.
Стоимость недельного отдыха (без учета перелета) в отелях Северного Кипра начинается от 305 € за двоих с завтраками, и от 1300 € в отелях «все включено». Эксперты уверены, что с вероятностью динамического пакетирования отдых на Северном Кипре может стать еще более выгодным, благодаря пакетированным предложениям.
Direct flights and decisions of the Russian Foreign Ministry are needed to increase the tourist flow to Northern Cyprus.
Federal tour operators also recognize that Northern Cyprus may become a higher priority destination among Russian tourists when the flight becomes more comfortable. Currently, tour operators do not offer travel packages with flights to the northern part of the island. Another problem in Northern Cyprus is the lack of Russian consulates, although this issue has already been raised.
Artur Muradyan, Vice-president of ATOR and head of the Space Travel tour operator, believes that in the old days, it was possible for tourists to get visas to visit the Greek parts of the island. However, at present, when air transportation to Larnaca and Paphos is not carried out, this factor ceases to be decisive. In addition, at the borders of Northern Cyprus, border guards no longer put stamps in passports, so there is no need to worry about difficulties.
The tourism business in Northern Cyprus assesses potential destinations for increasing the tourist flow from Russia and the CIS countries very positively. It already has everything you need: hotels, travel companies and even a new modern airport.
However, due to the uncertain status of a partially recognized republic and the impossibility of organizing privileged tour operator transportation, Russian organized passengers, unfortunately, miss one of the most interesting tourist destinations, and the tourism business is deprived of additional opportunities for development.