A notable 16.8 per cent increase in arrivals saw Maldives reach the 320,000 tourist arrivals milestone within just two months of 2019. Tourist arrivals to the Maldives by the end of February stood at 320,135 according to the most recent statistics released by the Ministry of Tourism. Other notable developments for the country saw a significant increase in guesthouses operating in the country due to new openings, as well as a surge in arrivals to the country by the United Kingdom.

In the month of January, Maldives saw a total of 151,552 arrivals, while in the month of February, 168,583 arrivals were recorded, resulting in the grand total of 320,135 in 2019 which is an 11.7 per cent increase when compared to last year.

The guesthouse industry in the country is booming and for the first two months of 2019, the developments in the guesthouse sector were clearly visible. The number of registered tourist establishments in the country stood at 836 for the month of February, which included the guesthouses, resorts/marinas and hotels operating in different areas of the country.

As the biggest revenue generating industry in the country, a massive focus is on developing establishments and providing opportunities for businesses in the industry. The Maldives currently has 137 operating resorts/marinas and 526 guesthouses. The number of guesthouses operating in the country was boosted with the opening of 10 new guesthouses in the country.

The highest number of arrivals into the country up until February were recorded from Central and Eastern Europe accounting for 55 per cent of all arrivals. The Asia Pacific region accounted for almost 36 per cent of arrivals, while arrivals from The Americas accounted for just 4.9 per cent.

As one of the most premier destinations for tourism in the world, Maldives ended the year 2018 on a high note with nearly 1.4 million visitors. The beginning of the year 2019, was kicked off with optimistic thoughts and massive developments on the horizon for the industry.

The average occupancy rates for the year stood at 76.3 per cent, which is a slight decrease when compared to the same time period of last year that stood at 77.6 per cent. The average number of days or stay duration by guests in the country was recorded at 6.2 per cent which is once again a decrease from the figure recorded last year at 6.5 per cent according to the statistics by the ministry.

In the top five countries in terms of arrivals and market share into the Maldives, China maintained its top spot as the number one with 57,089 arrivals. Italy was the second biggest market shareholder with 34,563 arrivals. Arrivals from India also saw an increase when compared to the figures from last year with 24,217 arrivals. The most notable increase in arrivals came from the United Kingdom, which ranked at fourth place in terms of market share and saw 23,739 arrivals coming into the country up until February, while the number of German arrivals into the Maldives stood at 20,959.

Over 300,000 tourist arrivals into the country within just two months is a significant factor that should not be overlooked. As unpredictable as the tourism industry is, the developments in the industry, coupled with the encouraging factors of increased arrivals into the country can be predictions for good tides and strong performance later in the year. For more information, visit www.tourism.gov.mv.