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Direct Flights from Fujian Boost Maldives Tourism, Marking China’s Growing Importance – Hotelier Maldives

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Visit Maldives has welcomed the first direct flight from Fujian Province, China, to the Maldives. A special ceremony was held today at Velana International Airport to mark the joyous occasion, commemorating the arrival of Xiamen Airlines flight MF8017 carrying tourists from the Fujian Province to the Maldives.

The tourists were greeted with a vibrant traditional BoduBeru performance, and presented with a special gift pack, including flowers. Dignitaries attending the event included the Ambassador of the People’s Republic of China to the Maldives, H.E Ambassador Wang Lixin; and representatives from the Ministry of Tourism; Maldives Airports Company Limited (MACL); Maldives Immigration; Maldives Customs Service; and other government enterprises and tourism associations in the Maldives.

China has long remained a crucial market for the Maldives tourism industry. The resumption of direct flights from China to the Maldives on January 18, 2023 contributed generously to tourist arrivals last year, with over 187,125 tourists from China visiting the Maldives, solidifying its place as one of the Maldives’ top three source markets. Notably, earlier this year on January 19, we welcomed the first direct flight from Hong Kong to the Maldives since 2020, which has contributed to a significant increase in Chinese visitors to our destination. Maldives also achieved the milestone of highest number of tourist arrivals in a single day on February 12, 2024. On that note, the surge in tourist arrivals is attributed to the growing number of tourists from China, reclaiming its position as the leading source market to the Maldives.

Tourist Arrival

Visit Maldives consistently promotes the Maldives as the premier destination in the Chinese market through strategic marketing endeavours. The Maldives achieved its highest-ever tourist arrivals last year, surpassing 1.8 million visitors. MMPRC has planned numerous activities for the Chinese market this year, including an e-learning campaign, digital promotions on leading Chinese apps, outdoor marketing initiatives, joint promotional campaigns, familiarisation trips, social media campaigns, and active participation in fairs and exhibitions.

The inauguration of direct flights from the Fujian Province to the Maldives and the targeted marketing activities in the Chinese market will undoubtedly contribute positively to the Maldives tourism industry, and further enhance the Maldives’ position as the top-of-the-mind destination for Chinese travellers.

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