Maldives records over 72,000 tourist arrivals since border reopening

Tourists disembark a plane at the Velana International Airport (Photo/VIA)

Tourist arrivals to Maldives have surpassed 72,000 since the island destination reopened its borders following the COVID-19 lockdown.

Statistics released by the Tourism Ministry show 72,623 tourists have visited Maldives between July 15 and November 28, increasing total tourist arrivals this year to 455,470.

Russia is the biggest source market for tourist arrivals with 16,285 arrivals, followed by 8,690 tourist arrivals from India, 5,312 tourist arrivals from the United Kingdom, and 5,218 tourist arrivals from the Unites States.

Maldives ended its near four month lockdown, reopening its borders, resorts and liveaboard vessels for tourists in July. It began allowing the reopening of guesthouses and hotels in residential islands for tourists in October.

Statistics released by the Tourism Ministry show 117 guesthouses in 24 residential islands are currently operational, along with 126 resorts, 5 hotels, and 123 liveaboard vessels.

Tourism Ministry is targeting 500,000 tourist arrivals this year in light of the COVID-19 pandemic, a severe blow to a country which had enjoyed more than triple the number last year.

Maldives is currently open to all tourists, provided they have proof of a negative COVID-19 PCR test taken maximum 96 hours before departure from their original destination.