Cyprus saw a remarkable 17,9% surge in tourist arrivals during September 2023 compared to the same period in 2022, while the increase for the first nine months of the year was 23.4%.
According to data released by the Statistical Service of Cyprus, the total number of tourist arrivals for September 2023 reached 487,350, compared to the 413,382 recorded in September 2022. The increase in September was part of a broader trend that has seen a 23.4% increase in tourist numbers during the January to September period of 2023, totaling 3,136,145 arrivals, compared to 2,540,554 in the same period of the previous year.
The United Kingdom emerged as the primary source of tourism for Cyprus during September 2023, with 34% of the total arrivals (165,869 visitors). Israel followed closely behind, contributing 11.7% (57,088), with Poland at 6.7% (32,530), Germany at 5.5% (26,907), and Sweden at 4.6% (22,196).
For the majority of tourists, holidays remained the primary reason for their visit, with 84.1% traveling for leisure, while 10.3% came to visit friends and relatives, and 5.5% had business-related purposes. Comparatively, in September 2022, 86.1% of tourists arrived in Cyprus for holidays, 9.1% for family visits, and 4.7% for business purposes.
Returns of residents of Cyprus increase
The report also highlighted a surge in the number of residents of Cyprus returning from trips abroad during September 2023. The data showed a remarkable increase of 14.5% compared to the same period in 2022.
In September 2023, a total of 140,187 residents of Cyprus returned from their travels abroad, compared to 122,450 during the same month in the previous year. The most popular destinations for returning residents were Greece, accounting for 37.1% of the total returnees (51,983), followed by the United Kingdom at 8.2% (11,488), Italy at 4.7% (6,556), and Russia at 4.0% (5,597).
The primary reason for residents’ overseas travels during September 2023 was leisure, with 76.1% embarking on holidays. Business-related trips constituted 19.7%, while studies made up 2.5% and other reasons accounted for 1.7%.