Vaccinated US Tourists to Cyprus Still Face COVID-19 Test

Αssociated Press

A man wearing mask sits on an airport bench a seat apart in line with social distancing rules at Cyprus main airport in Larnaca, on Tuesday, June 9, 2020. (AP Photo/Petros Karadjias)

NICOSIA -- American tourists who want to visit Cyprus will be required to take – at their own costs – PCR tests for COVID-19 before they depart and when they land, even if they are fully vaccinated.

But those from Switzerland and France, which along with the US were put into the risky Red category, won't, if they are vaccinated, even if it's from dubious versions including Russia's Sputnik V, or China's Sinopharm or Sinopharm, that are less effective that others.

Americans can get vaccines from the US-German team of Pfizer-BioNtech or the Massachusetts company Moderna, which require two shosts, and the single shot Johnson & Johnson, the favored versions for combating the Coronavirus, but not good enough for Cyprus – only for those from the US.

The change in policy was reported by in response to Cyprus putting restrictions on travelers from countries deemed risky while inviting them to come to help the battered economy.

The PCR test must be carried out within 72 hours before departure as well as given on landing in Cyprus, the government said, after earlier during the pandemic saying it would bear the costs of tests but now won't.