Members of the public may send up to 2 text messages each day for movements. The SMS can be sent from a Cyprus mobile phone to the number 8998 without any charges. Once the message is sent, a response will be sent back. You may be required to show this text response along with ID if you are stopped whilst out.
The SMS must have the following format:
X space ID or passport number space home postcode
Χ stands for the purpose of movement with the numbers 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 corresponding to the reasons listed below.
Identity Card or Passport No (up to 3 letters and up to 10 characters, numbers and letters in total) for:
- Cypriot citizens: the number of their Cypriot identity card;
- European citizens and third-country nationals: their ALIEN REGISTRATION NUMBER (ARC) of their registration certificate or residence permit;
- European citizens and third-country nationals who do not hold an ARC: the number of another identification document (foreign passport or identity card number, diplomatic passport number).
Home Postcode: 4 numbers
Reasons of movement:
- Going to a pharmacy, visiting a physician or for blood donation or laboratory testing for
Covid-19 or for vaccination at the vaccination centres;
- Going to a shop for essential goods/services, including take away;
- Going to the bank for transactions not available online;
- Strictly necessary visits to public services or services of the wider public sector and local
- Helping people who cannot take care of themselves or people who must protect
themselves or who are in self-isolation and/or in places of compulsory isolation
- Physical activity or individual sports practiced in areas were access is permitted;
- Going to a ceremony (e.g. funeral, wedding, christening) of first and second degree
relatives not exceeding 10 people or for individual prayer;
- Any other reason that may be justified under the lockdown measures (by presenting the
necessary proof for each case).
Point 8 above shall also include the following:
- movement of divorced or separated parents, which is necessary for the uninterrupted
communication between parents and children;
- going for specialised therapies for people with disabilities or chronic diseases, together
with their carer;
- driving a soldier from and to his army camp;
- going to and coming back from Larnaca and Paphos Airports for the transport of persons
upon presentation of proof (ticket) showing the day and/or time of arrival/departure;
- movement of farmers and livestock farmers, provided that they produce the CAPO form
of hectare or animal subsidy or, in case this is not available, a relevant certificate by the
District Agricultural Office;
- going to and coming back from animal shelters to take care or feed stray animals,
provided that the person has a certificate validated by a recognised animal welfare
organisation and the relevant notification to the Veterinary Services.
There will be 4 kind of replies to the SMS: approval, rejection due to the structure of the message, rejection for exceeding the maximum number of movements allowed and rejection for noncompliance with the curfew hours.
It is noted that after sending the SMS a reply shall be received and the movement shall be valid for a reasonable period of time depending on the category of movement for which approval has been granted.
Citizens must carry their identity card or passport for identification purposes in case of control by the competent authorities.
For those connected with a foreign mobile telephony provider, as well as to facilitate those who are not able – for any reason whatsoever – to send a SMS to 8988:
• for Cypriot phone numbers: 80012012
• for foreign numbers: +357 22 285777
The above service shall be available to the citizens from 05:00 a.m. to 21:00 p.m., both in Greek and English language.
Please note that the operator shall only serve mobile phone calls.
It is noted that the citizens shall be personally responsible for the correctness of the details stated to the operator and shall be held liable for false statement.
How to obtain authorisation for movement by exception:
- People under 65: SMS to 8998/IVR operator;
- People over 65 may use Form B for their movements by exception. (Download here)
It is clarified that employees going to and coming back from work need not send a SMS. They should present Form A signed by the employer. (Download here)
Moreover, no SMS is needed for:
• the movement of people with disabilities and persons falling within the spectrum of
autism, together with their carers;
• transport of minor children from and to kindergartens, nurseries, day-care centres, pre-primary schools and special education;
• for walking a domestic animal (within a radius of 500 m from their residence), provided
that they do not exceed two persons, except for minor children accompanied by their
The website www.pio.gov.cy/coronavirus provides comprehensive information on how to obtain authorisation for movement in exceptional cases.