- Author: Georgia Eleftheria Tsiolakki
- Awarded: Women Leader in 2019: Entrepreneur
- Executive: Windmills Car Hire & Ras Aquamarine Holiday Rentals
Our aim is to bring in surface the current situation of tourist sector and we clarify in our meeting that our conversation will focus in Protaras especially. We started our discussion with core issues of tourist sector which is all inclusive deals impacts in Cyprus economy. State some of consequence of all inclusive as follow:
- a significant amount of money does not circulate in local economy due the fact that hotels are sharing their profits up to 50% in some cases with tours operators
- due the fact of tour operators Cyprus became more expensive destination because hotels owners are sharing their profit( Cyprus was always expensive destination but not like today and lets keep in mind what is going on worldwide)
- all inclusive deals are offering excursion, car hire to tourist with double price,tourist having no clue that are better price if they booked with locals or alternative option of excursion.
- quick out good quality of tourist coming for the last 10 years. Because of extreme high price quality of tourist who were coming for such long prefer to travel somewhere else, where they will have budget to enjoy their holidays rather than staying in the hotel
Consequences in family business because of all inclusive:
- tourist are rip off from tour operators, end up to use all their money in all inclusive packages and coming to their holidays with restrict and limit budget.
- limit budget means that tourist will not eat to restaurants every night, will not rent a car ( if they do so they will want for one day just 20 euros which is not even profitable for a car hire company to do that)
- lack of business in family business lead many restaurants shut down with high quality service and food such as ANEMOS restaurant now it has been replaces with chain Zorpas, Costas Taverna opposite to Plaza Hotel and some others.
- business try to minimize cost in general and we end up with less quality of service.
” How is possible to go against all inclusive by the time that is legal’‘. Really nice question that many of us we will ask. Cyprus can create advance platform which tourist can book their hotels direct from there. Also commission from that platform can be invested in tourism such as planting more trees, fight vision pollution, maintaining beaches. Another strategy to face all inclusive is to start improving quality of hotel and booking department of each hotel. Therefore people can book direct. I am not going to mentioned which hotels but they are some hotels tourist try to book direct and they did not get any answer at all. In some of them, they even told them to book from tour operator. As a result most of hotel have no interest in promotion of Cyprus and Cypriot hospitality.
How to improve , monitor quality of tourist service , controlling different services such hotels service, transportation, restaurants, excursions. Again that issues is easy to be solved. For example to be a guide you need to graduate for guide schools and be able to speak fluently Greek & English & another language.
Last year in hotel are working” fake students” employees, internship students worldwide and foreigners. Of course based on human rights and EU laws, employees have the right to work in Cyprus( I am not against them at all) But how about quality a service. Imagine how tourist feel when can barely listen ” kalimera” . I do not mind employees from different countries but as long they applied some logical criteria in order to regain our Cypriot hospitality back. For recruitment in hotels and restaurants authorities need to add some criteria such as
- employees need to speak fluently Greek and English
- basic knowledge about Cyprus
- minimum salary wage need to officially establish based on cost of living to encourage Cypriots to work again in hotel management
New policy need to be consider in recruitment of international qualified staff.
Standards of rating hotels as 5 starts need to be adjusted. Criteria for rating starts come from the way pool is building , room sizes etc, but not regarding services, employees qualifications. The most important factor in hotel is how your guest feel and how clean it is, how good is food. If we asked tourist for the last 3 years to rate : service, cleaning, food we will discover reality.
Protection of the beach: Another important problem is that under hotel Silver Sands the beach is illegal occupied with private sea beds lock , available only for tourist staying in hotels, authorities need to mention to beach protection authority of Cyprus.
lso in August and high pick up bins are fill up sometimes so need to take rubbish out more frequently because rubbish end up in the beach when air is blowing.
Seasonal problem :
People who try to stay open all season they are alone. Government needs to support them and social insurance department too, government need to overview specific laws and legislation that will help small companies to stay open without paying so much expenses in social insurance and government procedures. For example Spain help the local business to stay open , they don’t pay social money for their staff during low season.
Local business does not any vision of working together and cooperate. For example to create packages such as accommodation , car rentals , local restaurants. Lack of cooperation lack of vision lack of team spirit.
Information for tourist almost nowhere…. Tourist find it hard to speak up about Cyprus, meet locals and get hand in information.
New markets for winter and summers. Encouraging new markets such introducing new quality of tourist such as Poland, France , Hungarian , Latvia , Netherlands, Switzerland. Europe have older people and tourist tend to travel to Teneriff or North Spain where weather is not that good , why not coming in Cyprus?
We are not just a car hire company but we feel that we ambassadors of tourism sector in Cyprus. Our responsibility is not only to provide super service in car hire but to restore Cypriot hospitality , be realistic and honest acting in frameworks of ethical behavior. I would like to thank you secret group in FACEBOOK Cyprus the island of Beauty, my lovely friend and customer Bronwyn Hirst for providing hard evidence regarding prices for the last years.