The Maldives Marketing and Public Relations Corporation (MMPRC) announced the new tourism strategy for 2020 during a press conference at World Travel Market 2019, which will include a stronger focus on promoting the rich culture of the Maldives and attracting niche markets such as MICE, culture and sports tourism.The Maldives is a destination traditionally known for its high-end resort accommodation popular with honeymooners, however next year will see a stronger focus by MMPRC on promoting the diverse range of activities available to tourists such as beach volleyball, badminton and surfing.
Furthermore, with the growing demand for experiential travel by holidaymakers, MMPRC’s marketing activities will also aim to promote the rich local culture of the inhabited islands that surround the destination’s resort islands. This will be achieved by developing a strategy centred around cultural tourism to help showcase Maldivian life to visitors through local cuisine, cultural performances, traditional handicrafts and heritage sites.
In terms of MICE tourism, the country is encouraging the growth of hotels and resorts with infrastructure for events and conferences in order to attract business events as well as special interest groups keen on culture and sports.
The marketing strategy will be implemented through activities such as trade roadshows, media familiarisation trips, plus joint marketing campaigns with airlines and trade partners.
During the press conference at WTM, Mr Thoyyib spoke about the Maldives’ current offering for visitors, which includes over 145 resorts, 521 guesthouses and 12 hotels. This year there has been an influx of new resorts opening in the Maldives, including several new family-friendly, adult-only and high-end properties. In October 2019, the Maldives also welcomed increased airlift for UK travellers with the launch of a new five-times-weekly flight from London Heathrow to Malé, via Bahrain, with Gulf Air.
Speaking about the new tourism strategy, Mr Thoyyib Mohamed, Managing Director for MMPRC said: “The Maldives is well-known for its luxury and honeymoon product however during the last five years, the destination has also seen a growth in the number of families who visit, plus an increased interest in diving and our local island culture. We have welcomed 19 new properties during last year and this increase in hotel product is testament to the huge growth in the market and is a positive move for the economy.”
Mr Thoyyib also commented on the visitor arrivals to the Maldives and said: “The UK is an extremely important market for us and has seen the strongest progress for year-round growth. We welcomed a total of 114,602 UK visitors in 2018 which saw a 10.2% increase compared to visitor arrivals in 2017, and this year alone seen over 1.2 million tourists visit from all markets already.”
In terms of visitor arrivals to the Maldives in 2019, the island nation remains one of the UK’s most popular holiday destinations, with a total of 90,965 UK holidaymakers arriving to the Maldives from January – September 2019. This represents an impressive 9.2% year-on-year increase in UK arrivals. The UK holds the fifth market ranking on tourist arrivals by nationality, firmly holding 7.3% of the total market share and steadily increasing year-on-year.
In total, the Maldives has projected that the destination will welcome 1.5 million international tourists in 2019, and it is hoped this figured will increase to 2.5 million tourists per year by the end of 2023.
For further information on the Maldives, visit www.visitmaldives.com.
Notes To Editors:
Image 1: Maldives Marketing and Public Relations Corporation (MMPRC) announced a new tourism strategy for 2020 at their World Travel Market London press conference.
Image 2: (From left to right) Visha Miahir, Executive Board Member of Association of Tourism Industry; Mr Thoyyib Mohamed, Managing Director of Maldives Marketing and Public Relations Corporation (MMPRC); Dr Farahanaz Faizal, Ambassador of Maldives Embassy in UK; Benjamin Bryant, experiential traveller and social media videographer.
Image 3: Maldives Marketing and Public Relations Corporation (MMPRC) press conference at World Travel Market London 2019.
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