A LONE holidaymaker on his first trip abroad fears he may be trapped in Cyprus after the country has gone into lockdown in response to the coronavirus.

Jason Kelly, from Radcliffe, flew out to Paphos in the south of the Mediterranean island on March 13 and is due to return on Friday.

However, the 41-year-old says all flights out of the island are being cancelled leaving him facing the prospect of becoming stranded.

To make matters worse, the Cypriot government has instructed all hotel and tourist accommodation to cease operations by March 21 at the latest, and to remain closed until April 30.

If he is unable to return to the UK by then, Mr Kelly says he would be left with nowhere to stay and with just 100 Euros of his travel money left.

He said: “This is my first time abroad and I’m a lone traveller so I’m really panicking.

“There’s a lot of people stuck out here.”

In a desperate bid to get home, Mr Kelly has been trying to book flights back home but has so far been unsuccessful.

He had even booked on to a flight to Liverpool but that too was cancelled.

At Paphos airport he described scenes of hundreds of people queueing trying to speak to a single person at the desk.

He has also repeatedly tried to ring his travel operator but says their phone line has been shut off for the last three days.

Further, he has travelled for three hours to reach the British Consulate in Ayia Napa but found that it too was shut.

He added: “My hotel, the Hotel Paphiessa, has been really accommodating and the staff have been really sympathetic.

“But the President of Cyprus has declared a national state of emergency.

“Hotels have until March 21 to shut their operations and they will remain shut until April 30.

“After March 21 there might be some private accommodation but that will be really expensive and I won’t be able to afford it.

“They have told me nothing so I would be without anywhere to stay and no flight back.

“It’s all up to the UK Government now to sort out some flights.”

In response to the coronavirus pandemic, The UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office has advised against all but essential travel to the Republic of Cyprus and recommends that British nationals that wish to leave Cyprus contact their travel operator to make arrangements to do so as soon as possible.

It adds that the British government is currently in discussions with its Cypriot counterpart about emergency measures in Cyprus to shut down hotel operations and is asking airlines to offer more flights.

An spokesperson for the Foreign and Commonwealth Office said: “We recognise that any British people currently overseas may be nervous about the impact of coronavirus on their travel and their health.

“We are in close contact with travel providers and our international partners to provide support to those British people affected by ongoing measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19.”