Photo Credit: Visit Maldives

On 12 December 2020, the Maldives welcomed the 100,000th tourist to arrive at the archipelago since borders were reopened on 15 July.

Held at the Velana International Airport on Saturday morning, the Tourism Ministry, the Maldives Marketing and Public Relations Corporation (MMPRC), and the Maldives Immigration and Maldives Airports Company Limited (MACL) jointly identified and congratulated the guest upon their arrival.

The Tourism Minister Dr. Abdulla Mausoom said, “Surpassing the milestone of 100,000 tourists in advance of the projections is really encouraging. This achievement is the outcome of a unified #MaldivesApproach to a global challenge. This is the result of HEP Solih’s courageous decision to open the Maldives borders with a whole of government, whole of travel and tourism industry and whole of community approach to ensure this vital industry is set in motion with a strong focus on safety with the minimum possible inconvenience to tourists.” 

“Thanks to travel and tourism industry partners, employees, and associations; health professionals, related government authorities and councils; the diplomatic and international community and lovely people of the Maldives; the team members of Immigration, Airports Company, Tourist Police, Port Health, Customs, MMPRC and Ministry of Tourism. We thank the tourists for visiting us and sharing their #MaldivesExperience to the world. You all made this possible,” he further continued.

The special tourist is Jasmin Burki, who arrived from Switzerland via Emirates.

On arrival, officials of MMPRC and Maldives Immigration, along with a Deputy Tourism Minister, MMPRC Managing Director Thoyyib Mohamed, Controller General of Immigration Mohamed Ahmed Hussain, and MACL CEO Gordon Andrew Stewart congratulated the tourist, which Immigration controller Mohamed Ahmed Hussain, MMPRC Managing Director Thoyyib, MACL CEO Steward, and the Deputy Tourism Minister also handed a special holiday gift.

Hussain said, “I am delighted to welcome the 100,000th tourist today. It was unimaginable, but I saw the thirst of the related agencies and industry stakeholders to achieve this milestone in such a short period of time. This gives us the assurance that, even under dire circumstances, we can achieve remarkable things by working together.” 

“With wishful thinking, dedication and significant innovation on the policy front, our tourism industry is coming back from the depths of collapse by a swift rebound in growth. I would also like to ensure that Maldives Immigration will embrace new technologies and utilize all available resources to fast-track the passage for tourists. The launching of the world’s first nation-wide loyalty program, Maldives Border Miles is one such initiative and we aim to achieve new heights in 2021, together with our joint stakeholders,” he further elaborated.

Upon receiving the special souvenir, Jasmin was photographed by the official jetty with the special “Instagram Frame” which highlights that the Maldives is the World’s Leading Destination of 2020.

The 500,000th tourist of 2020 is expected to arrive by late December, and the country will reach peak arrival rates during the year 2021. The Maldives witnessed immense success in 2019, with a record-breaking 1.7 million tourist arrivals. Since then, the Maldives has taken upon many diverse marketing strategies to steadily recover the tourism market from the negative impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Since then, tourist arrivals have steadily increased due to the multiple promotions of the Maldives along with resorts and guesthouses taking basic health and safety measures, prior to their reopenings. The Maldives also provides more convenience and safety when it comes to preventing the spreading of COVID-19 due to the convenient geographical structure of the islands.

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