Maldives launches loyalty programme to attract tourists

Helen Coffey
·2-min read
The Maldives is attempting to win back tourists
The Maldives is attempting to win back tourists

As the global tourism industry continues to suffer due to travel restrictions caused by the coronavirus pandemic, destinations are having to become increasingly savvy to survive.

The Maldives is the latest place to get innovative, attempting to tempt tourists back with its own loyalty programme.

Dubbed Maldives Border Miles, the scheme, launched by the Maldives’ Minister of Tourism during a virtual ceremony, will reward frequent holidaymakers to the island nation.

Starting from 1 December, travellers can earn points depending on the frequency and duration of their visits, and earn extra credit if it’s a special occasion.

Watch: 9 Mistakes to Avoid in the Maldives

There will be three tiers on the reward system: Aida (bronze), Antara (silver) and Abaarana (gold).

Authorities are so far remaining tight-lipped about exactly what loyalty “points” will get you, with some speculating it could mean money off certain aspects of a trip, and others positing they might be used to access exclusive experiences or benefits.

The sparsely populated website merely states: “Maldives Border Miles is a three-tiered loyalty programme focused on tourism promotion.

“Tourists enrolled to this programme will earn points for each border crossing. Additional points are rewarded for the visits on special occasions.

“Once the tourist reaches to a tally of a specific amount of points, privileges are rewarded with amazing benefits. As they move up the tiers, privileges are enhanced, and benefits are made exclusive.”

The Maldives’ economy relies heavily on tourism, and the country reopened its borders in mid-July, with the aim of having 146 of its 156 resorts (94 per cent) open by the end of October 2020.

While Brits are allowed into the Maldives, they must present a negative Covid-19 PCR test on arrival, with the result issued no more than 72 hours prior to departure.

Tourists must also fill in a Traveller Health Declaration form 24 hours before they head to the Maldives.

Temperature checks and screening procedures are in place on arrival, with quarantine facilities set up to isolate any suspected cases of Covid-19.

However, the Maldives is not on the Department for Transport’s list of “travel corridors”, nor the Foreign Office’s list of “safe” countries, meaning visitors will not be covered by standard travel insurance and will be required to quarantine for two weeks upon their return to the UK.

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