Maldives aims to welcome 500,000 tourists in 2020, the newly appointed Minister of Tourism Dr. Abdulla Mausoom revealed.
Speaking to a local media, Dr. Mausoom said that the government is expecting an influx of around 120,000 tourists starting from September until the end of the year, making the total estimated figures to 500,000 tourist arrivals (in total) for the entire year.
“If we manage to reduce the COVID-19 numbers, airlines will start operating again and Maldives will be designated as a safe country,” Dr. Mausoom said. He estimated that the country will welcome around 6,000 tourists within August.
Maldives ceased on-arrival visa to all tourists from 27th March 2020 as a precautionary measure to curb the spreading of COVID-19 outbreak in the country. The borders were reopened 4 months later on 15th July. Prior to the lockdown, Maldives welcomed around 380,000 tourists within the first 3 months of the year. Since the reopening of borders on 15th July, the island nation welcomed 5,177 tourists in the first month.
Dr. Mausoom highlighted that the estimated 120,000 is the lowest possible estimate for the remainder of the year. However, despite the situation, the bed nights of tourist facilities has increased. Tourists are now expected to spend a minimum of 14 days when they arrive in the island destination.