Tourist arrivals for 2022 reached 900,808 by 20 July, up 58% from the same period last year.
The figure falls short of pre-pandemic levels by -4.8% as 946,064 tourists visited during the corresponding period in 2019. But the average duration of stay is up from 6.3 days then to 8.1 days now.
By the end of June this year, the Maldives welcomed 809,603 tourists, reaching 50% of the 1.6 million arrivals target for 2022.
India remains the top market with 132,151 tourists as of 20 July, representing a 14.7% market share, followed by the UK (104,667 tourists), Russia (94,151 tourists), Germany (73,118 tourists) and Italy (51,850 tourists).
There are 163 resorts, 155 safari vessels and 849 hotels and guesthouses in operation across the country.
The Maldives tourism industry continues its robust recovery despite setbacks posed by the impact of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine – which caused arrivals to plummet from the top market – and the complete absence of Chinese holidaymakers, who accounted for the largest source market before the pandemic.
Tourist arrivals in May meanwhile surpassed the pre-pandemic record, prompting the tourism ministry to declare that the “Maldives is now a year-round destination.” The record signalled a shift from the “seasonal tourism” that prevailed with a peak period from December to March, Tourism Minister Dr Abdulla Mausoom told the press, expressing optimism for future prospects with more favourable global conditions.
May was only the fourth month – after August, October and November 2021 – to record an increase in arrivals compared to the corresponding pre-pandemic period since borders reopened in July 2020.