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The second session of the training webinar series for the French Travel Trade was conducted on 08th June 2021 on the recently launched virtual event management platform of Visit Maldives ‘My Virtual Maldives’. This platform is designed to amplify audience engagement and networking by connecting attendees from across the globe through virtual exhibitions, roadshows, webinars to training and live marketing events targeting the travel trade and consumers alike.

Conducted in French language, the aim of the webinar series is to promote Maldives as a safe haven for travelers and educate the French Travel Trade about the destination with the latest information and travel guidelines. This helps agents acquire all the updates to sell the Maldives in time when leisure travel resumes in France. The second session was focused on promoting Maldives as the most preferred destination for honeymooners and couples.

The hour-long session focused on unique activities that can be experienced in Maldives for couples and honeymooners. From private yoga sessions, sunset cruise, dining & movie under the stars, and lazy afternoon lounging by the pool, the session will cover a unique variety of experiences in Maldives. In addition, unique experiences to Maldives such as bubble tents on a beach, private water-villa and flying above the islands in a seaplane was highlighted.

Apart from the destination presentation, Reethi Beach, Pullman Maldives Maamutaa and Grand Park Kodhipparu participated in the session and talked about their product on offer respective to the theme. In order to make the session more interactive, a quiz was held and the winner was awarded a free holiday to Maldives sponsored by Reethi Beach.

With over 40 French Agents in attendance the session ended with a Q&A in which agents cleared specific information regarding the destination. The latest travel and health guidelines, COVID-19 situation, the stringent safety measures in place as well as the recently initiated ‘I’m Vaccinated’ campaign were discussed. In addition, information on resorts, guesthouses, liveaboards and hotels were also clarified along with the unique experiences offered in Maldives.

The webinar series which is scheduled for every quarter of the year, will each focus on a different theme of interest. Apart from the destination presentation, industry partners will be invited to talk about their product on offer respective to the theme. The first session held earlier this year focused on the variety of water sports and water activities visitors can experience in Maldives. The theme for the second session was ‘Romantic Getaways in Maldives’. Subsequent sessions will cover Sustainable tourism in Maldives, and Local culture & Guesthouses.

In line with the marketing strategies to promote the destination in the French market, Visit Maldives has recently concluded a campaign in France with the French Tour Operator Very Chic. Other major activities planned for the year targeting the French market include partnership with Tour Operator Amplitudes, Social and Digital Media campaign with Odigeo, Media familiarisation Trips and participation at the International French Travel Market (IFTM Top Resa) and International Luxury Travel Mart (ILTM). Several of these activities will commence once the French government eases travel restrictions for travelers.

As of 03rd June 2021 France is ranked in the 7th position of the highest performing markets to Maldives with an arrival figure of 10,208 travelers . France remains a key focus market in the recovery of tourism in Maldives and the target is to achieve pre-pandemic growth levels. The Maldives have welcomed over 466,500 tourist arrivals in 2021 so far.

The administration of the COVID-19 vaccine was initiated on 1st February 2021 with the government of Maldives set to provide free COVID-19 vaccines to all citizens and residents of the country in the upcoming months.

Visit Maldives together with the Ministry of Tourism launches “I’m Vaccinated” campaign in order to share a positive message regarding the vaccination of staff working in the tourism sector as well as promoting the initiatives undertaken to ensure the Maldives remains one of the safest destinations in the world for travelers. The ultimate target is to make Maldives the destination with the first fully vaccinated tourism sector in the world.

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