NICOSIA – Some 21 years after its operation ceased, a ferry between Cyprus and Greece will begin again at some point after the Cyprus Shipping Deputy Ministry said a tender process would begin to seek bidders.
The government will include a subsidy of 5.5 million euros ($6.25 million) for a three-year contract and consider an extension for another three years, said the site Shipping News.
That’s in line with what the European Union allows to reinstate the line that was losing money when it ended with hopes enough people will prefer to travel by ferry than take the short hop flight of one hour and 40 minutes.
The ferry would take 16 hours and cost 50 euros ($57) one way or 80 euros ($91 round trip) and be more expensive than the cheapest flight available at $23 linking the countries.
The service will be offered on a weekly basis between April-May to September-October only as a seasonal service and have 22 return sailings annually on a limited service during peak periods. It wasn’t said why the summer wasn’t included.
Deputy Shipping Minister Vassilios Demetriades said that, “Reviving the ferry connection will help us to continue building our relationship with the rest of the Mediterranean and we welcome the opportunity to expand the ferry link to a third neighboring country beyond Greece too.
“We also recognize that there will be higher demand during the summer season and, therefore, will consider a seasonal ferry connection to encourage a broader range of applicants for this tender,” he added.
The deadline for tender submissions is noon on Jan. 28, 2022.