K. Male'
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10 Feb 2023 | Fri 14:29
Tourists at Velana International Airport
Tourists at Velana International Airport
Sun Online
Tourist arrivals for February
Maldives welcomes 42,449 tourists within first week of February
Maldives has welcomed a total of 214,985 visitors since the new year began
1,218 tourist accommodation establishments are currently in operation
President Solih stated that the Maldives will be welcoming 3.5 million tourists, annually, by 2028

Maldives has welcomed more than 42,000 tourists so far in February.

This was revealed by the Ministry of Tourism in its latest daily statistics, publicized on Wednesday.

Since the new year began, Maldives has welcomed a total of 214,985 visitors. This includes 172,536 tourists welcomed during January and 42,449 tourists welcomed on from in the first week of February.

According to the ministry, this figure is an increase of 31.3 percent from the 163,684 arrivals recorded in the same period last year, and a significant increase from the 113,592 arrivals recorded in 2021.

So far this month, the highest daily arrivals was recorded on February 4, when more than 6,800 visitors were welcomed at Velana International Airport (VIA).

The daily average for the newly commenced year is at 5,658 and tourists are staying in the Maldives for an average of eight days.

Looking at the daily arrivals for February 2023 according to the most recent daily statistics publicized by the ministry:

  • 5,623 tourists were welcomed on February 1
  • 5,892 tourists were welcomed on February 2
  • 6,355 tourists were welcomed on February 3
  • 6,846 tourists were welcomed on February 4
  • 6,528 tourists were welcomed on February 5
  • 5,454 tourists were welcomed on February 6
  • 5,751 tourists were welcomed on February 7

The statistics go on to reveal that Russia has topped the source market for the archipelago nation’s tourism, contributing 13 percent of the market share with 27,960 arrivals recorded from the country by February 8.

Although the country ranked third since the beginning of the year, India has climbed up to the second position contributing 10.9 percent with 23,422 arrivals. 2022 ended with the neighboring country as the top source market for Maldives tourism.

Coming in third is Italy contributing 9.5 percent with 20,513 arrivals.

Other top tourism markets so far in 2023 are:

  • United Kingdom contributing 8.8 percent with 18,942 arrivals
  • Germany contributing 6.4 percent with 13,662 arrivals
  • United States contributing 4.3 percent with 9,274 arrivals
  • France contributing 4.2 percent with 8,979 arrivals
  • China contributing 3.2 percent with 6,909 arrivals
  • Switzerland contributing 2.2 percent with 4,723 arrivals
  • Poland contributing 1.9 percent with 4,044 arrivals

Although Kazakhstan and South Korea were among the top source markets of Maldives tourism by the end of January, the two countries have been knocked off the list.

The archipelago nation welcomed its first tourist visitor of the new year with a special ceremony held at Velana International Airport (VIA) for Nikolai Stratichuk from Russia, who arrived with his family on his first-ever visit to Maldives.

Statistics go on to reveal that 1,218 tourist accommodation establishments are currently in operation including 168 resorts, 13 hotels, 880 guesthouses and 157 liveaboard vessels.

A total of 59,840 beds are currently operational at these facilities including 41,049 in resorts, 1,640 in hotels, 14,250 in guesthouses and 2,901 in liveaboard vessels.

The guesthouses in operation span across 116 islands of 20 atolls, with hotels in operation across seven islands of seven atolls.

Due to the numerous safety precautions implemented in the face of the Covid-19 pandemic, alongside border closure, 2020 was a sluggish year for Maldives tourism. However, tourist arrivals began to bounce back with the easing of travel restrictions as well as safety measures against Covid-19 in 2021.

During 2020, Maldives recorded 555,494 tourist arrivals, which was a drastic plunge from the previous year’s 1,702,887 arrivals. Maldives met its tourist arrival target for 2021 in late December and welcomed a total of 1,321,932 tourists by the end of the year.

In 2022, Maldives welcomed 1,675,285 tourists. President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih in his presidential address on 3 February 2022, revealed that Maldives aimed to welcome 1.6 million tourists in 2022. The island nation reached its target with the combined efforts of relevant government agencies, the private sector, and industry stakeholders.

In his presidential address this year, delivered at the People’s Majlis on 6 February 2023, President Solih stated that the Maldives will be welcoming 3.5 million tourists, annually, by 2028.

Describing the past three years as the most challenging years the Maldivian economy has faced, he noted that the Covid-19 pandemic brought a complete halt to the Maldivian economy.

The president went on to state that the administration can show results based on mathematical results on the work done and what remains to be done, adding that data demonstrate how well the Maldivian economy is doing.

Highlighting that the Maldives will be welcoming 3.5 million tourists annually by 2028, President Solih stated that this will be the result of all of the commenced, ongoing and completed developmental projects of the administration.

He added that the development projects of his administration will take the Maldives’ tourism industry to new heights.

The President said that this will double the country’s economic growth, remarking that the total productivity of the country, which was at MVR 81 billion in 2018, can be doubled and increased to MVR 177 billion in 10 years.

The golden jubilee year of tourism held a record of milestones related to the tourism sector. As such, Maldives was crowned the World’s Leading Destination three times in a row last year.

Minister of Tourism, Dr. Abdulla Mausoom noted that this quick rebound of Maldives tourism to pre-pandemic level is a clear indication of the visionary leadership of President Solih, sound tourism policies and the strong partnership between the government and the private sector.

It has been 50 years since zealous travelers have been visiting the Maldives which has been drawing in visitors with its picturesque beauty for years.

Tourism was introduced in the Maldives in 1972.

Last updated at: 7 months ago
Reviewed by: Maryam Dhaanish Nasheed
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