At the close of the first week of 2021, 26 International Airlines are currently operating flights to the Maldives.
Statistics published by the Ministry of Tourism show that despite the prevailing nature of the global Covid-19 pandemic, many of the world's leading airlines have begun operating flights to the Maldives following re-opening of the country's international borders on 15 June 2020.
The Ministry's records show that in December of last year, 10 tourist markets showed exponential growth, including many countries from the West, Central Europe and the Middle-East.
Qatar Airways was the first airline to resume operation to the Maldives following re-opening of borders, with other major international airlines such as British Airways and Emirates joining in with multiple flights to the island nation soon after.
The market for tourists from Kazakhstan increased by 214.8 percent in December 2020 compared to December of 2019, with 2,839 Kazakh tourists having visited the Maldives last month.
In addition to this, the market for tourists from Ukraine increased by 95.7 percent as the number of Ukrainian arrivals in December 2019 was 1538 compared to 3010 arrivals documented in December of 2020. Arrivals from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) increased from 898 tourists visiting in December 2019 to 1,525 having visited in December 2020, which is a 69.8 percent growth in the market.
The Tourism Ministry statistics further show that while 9,037 Russian tourists visited Maldives in December of 2019, the number increased to 15,323 in December of 2020, showing a growth of 69.6 percent in the market for Russian tourists. Major Russian airlines such as Aeroflot have begun operating multiple flights to the Maldives in recent weeks.
In December of 2019, 344 tourists visited the Maldives from Egypt, and the number increased by 57.3 percent as 541 tourists arrived in the country from Egypt in December of 2020.
Additionally, the tourist market Slovakia grew by 51.2 percent between 2019 and 2020, with the Romanian tourism market also having expanded by 33.9 percent over the past year.
The size of tourism markets from Pakistan and Bulgaria also increased by 44.6 percent and 35.8 percent respectively between 2019 and 2020.
Overall, the statistics show that tourism markets from the West and Central Europe grew by 44.1 percent in the Month of December when comparing records from December 2019 and December 2020.
At the close of the first week of 2021, Russia stands as the largest tourism market for the Maldives. India, Ukraine, Kazakhstan, the United Kingdom, Romania, Germany, France, the United States and Uzbekistan, along with Russia, make up the top 10 tourist markets for the country thus far in the new year. International airlines have been increasing the number of flights they operate to the Maldives in order to cater to growing demand for the island destination among their customers.