Maafaru International Airport has witnessed a record-breaking number of private jet landings in the past year. According to the latest statistics from Island Aviation Service Ltd, the airport’s management company, a total of 353 private jets touched down in 2023. This figure marks a significant increase from the 228 jets recorded in 2022.
Maafaru International Airport, which began operating as an international airport in July 2019, has become a gateway for affluent tourists, especially from Europe and the Middle East. Last year, the airport facilitated the arrival of 1,934 tourists, with April and December being the peak months for arrivals.
The airport, strategically located in the Noonu Atoll, is a preferred entry point for visitors to the region’s opulent resorts. Currently, there are 7 high-end resorts in the atoll, with plans for further expansion, including the development of 13 additional islands dedicated to resort development. This expansion is expected to increase the demand for Maafaru Airport further in the coming years.
Maafaru’s strategic development has focused on accommodating the most commonly used aircraft in private aviation, including the Airbus A320 and Boeing models. In a bid to cater to an even broader range of international flights, the Maldivian government has announced plans to extend the airport’s runway by 650 meters, bringing its total length to 2,800 meters. This expansion will enable the airport to accommodate larger aircraft, such as the Boeing 777, thus enhancing its capacity to serve the growing number of tourists.
The rise in private jet landings at Maafaru International Airport is not just a reflection of the Maldives’ status as a premier holiday destination but also indicates the changing trends in luxury travel. With its increased accessibility and state-of-the-art facilities, Maafaru is poised to become an even more significant player in the global tourism industry, attracting high-net-worth individuals seeking an exclusive and secluded vacation experience in the stunning archipelago of the Maldives.