Before you go…
Airports and Flights
There are three international airports in the Maldives. Most likely you will fly into Velana International Airport which is in Male and is busy with flights, but some of our customers also use Gan International Airport in the Addu Atoll. This connects via Sri Lanka so is a good option for twin-centre holidays.
For many resorts, you must arrive before 15:30 in order to have a daylight transfer to your resort. We can arrange an alternative accommodation for one night if needed, but this is worth keeping in mind when choosing your flights.
Be sure to visit your GP atleast six weeks before travel for general advice on travel risks and to make sure your vaccinations are up to date.
It is expressly forbidden to bring certain items into the Maldives and if you have these on arrival in Male they will be confiscated. This includes, but is not limited to, alcohol, narcotics, tobacco and ‘idols of worship’. Please consult the full and up to date list on the Maldives Customs Webpage here.
Medicine & Health
If you are travelling with controlled medication for your personal use, you will need a valid medical prescription issued by a registered medical practitioner. Be sure to obtain this before you travel and carry it with you.
Most resorts have a doctor in residence or these are sometimes shared with another nearby island. Please do tell us if you have any particular health needs we should keep in mind when helping you choose your resort, or to make the resort aware of.
Visas & Passports
It is recommended that you safely carry your passport at all times and ensure that it is valid for 6-months beyond the date of travel
On arrival, all passport holders will be issued with a 30 day stamp (some countries get longer), so you do not need to pre arrange a visa for your trip to the Maldives unless you plan to stay longer that 30 days. Extensions can be arranged, please discuss this with your specialist.
A comprehensive travel insurance policy is a must – we recommend this for all Fleewinter customers. Specifically for the Maldives I would recommend checking that diving is covered if you plan to partake, as this can be grouped under ‘dangerous activities’ and be excluded from some policies. Should there be a medical emergency, expensive seaplane transfers are usually required so do check for this too.
It is a good idea to photocopy all relevant documents – passport, travel, insurance policy etc., and leave one copy at home. Carry another copy with you separate from the originals.
Packing for the Maldives…
There are weight limits for seaplane transfers and these are strictly enforced – 20kg per person is standard. Excesses are charged at a premium so travel light!
Almost everything for sale at your resort is imported and this will be reflected in the price. Take what you need – sunscreen, hats, cover ups, insect repellent and feminine hygiene products to name a few.
The great thing is that the weather is reliably very good in the Maldives all year and you won’t need lots of layers!
Travelling with Children
Plan on taking everything you will need – nappies, formula milk, wipes etc. Anything that is available at your resort will carry a mark up.
The sun is strong in the Maldives. We do advise taking plenty of sunscreen (you will almost definitely find some available on the islands but you can expect a significant mark up) and cover-ups are advised for example a sun-proof top/swimsuit.
While in the Maldives…
- Electricity supply is 220-240V and the UK-style three-pin plug is standard. However we would recommend travelling with an international adaptor as curiously at some resorts we have encountered different style plugs!
- You will find a safe in most rooms, or available at reception if not. The Maldives is a very safe place to be but it’s always sensible to take advantage of such facilities where they are available. You won’t even need your credit card until the last day to pay anyway as everything will most likely be billed to your room.
- Be aware of ‘island time’ or ‘resort time’. The Maldives is GMT+5 hours, but some resorts operate one hour ahead of the time in Male!
- The water in the taps is usually treated rain water and not intended for consumption – your resort will supply purified drinking water or bottled water.
Local Customs and Etiquette
While staying on resorts, you don’t need to worry too much about local etiquette. However, if you do take a visit to Male or a local inhabited island, please do be aware that the Maldives is a muslim country and rather conservative. Women should wear long skirts and dress modestly, and men should wear tops even in the heat. Discretion is advised with all public displays of affection. Local men will appreciate shaking hands, but do not expect this of local women. None of this should make you feel in any way unwelcome – the Maldivian people are polite and kind, and very welcoming of tourists that respect their religion and traditions. Always ask for permission before taking photographs of locals, and don’t be offended if they decline.
The local currency is the rufiyaa (Rf), and 1 Rf is made of 100 larees. However, while on your resort you can expect to see prices in USD$ and it’s very unlikely you will even need any cash as your island purchases can be charged to your room and/or settled by credit card.
If you would like to tip your room staff/butler this will be gratefully received but you can do this in USD$ or Euros€ to avoid being stuck with lots of local currency that is tricky to change back.
The language of the Maldives is Dhivehi. English is widely spoken in Male and the resorts.