NewsDecember 5, 2020

Maldives Tourism Bounces Back with Over 460,000 Tourist Arrivals So Far in 2020

Maldives tourism continues to bounce back with 79,627 tourist arrivals since border reopening. With this, Maldives has welcomed a total of 462,474 tourists as of 2nd December 2020.

Arrivals Vs Target – Estimated to reach target of 500,000 by 25th December 2020


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 has welcomed 79,627 tourists. This is with a 66% increase in tourist arrivals in November 2020.

After border reopening, on August 2020, Maldives set a new target, to welcome 500,000 tourists in 2020. Tourism Minister Dr. Abdulla Mausoom estimated 120,000 tourists as the lowest possible estimate for the remainder of the year. “We expect to reach target of 100,000 tourists by 16 December and annual arrival target of 500,000 by 25 December”, the Tourism Minister recently revealed in a tweet.

Top Markets – Russia leads the tourist arrivals for 2020

The top source market for the tourist arrival in 2020 is Russia with 46,065 arrivals, followed by Italy with 45,645 tourist arrivals. India stands third with 44, 268 tourist arrivals, while United Kingdom is at fourth with 38,285. With no arrivals since border reopening, China still stands at fifth place with 34,074 tourists. Other top source markets include Germany, France, USA, Switzerland and Japan.

Source: Ministry of Tourism Monthly Statistics

However, looking at the total arrivals after border reopening (from 15th July – 2nd December), Russia remains the top with 17,404 followed by India with 10,318 tourists. United Kingdom has jumped to third position with 5,703 with USA at number fourth with 5,488. Other top source markets after the border reopening includes United Arab Emirates, Germany, Ukraine, France, Spain and Brazil. This includes November arrivals where some markets broke November 2019 records like:

Egypt +40%
Kazakhstan +24.4%
Russia +5%
Brazil +2.9%
Ukraine +0.9%

Tourist Accommodation Facilities – 88% resorts operational with 130 guesthouses in 24 islands

As of 2nd December 2020, Maldives has 392 tourist facilities operational with 36, 446 beds. This is with 134 resorts/marinas accumulating to 30,982 beds followed by 130 guesthouses with 2,532 beds, 123 safari vessels with 2,330 beds and 5 hotels with 602 beds.

In addition to this, 2 more resorts are scheduled to open in December 2020 with 564 beds. Out of the total 159 resorts in Maldives, this marks 84% operational.

Guesthouses are operational at 24 islands in 8 atolls: Noonu, Baa, Kaafu, Alifu Alifu, Alifu Dhaalu, Vaavu, Gnaviyani and Seenu.

Source: Ministry of Tourism Monthly Statistics