For the second year in a row, Russian tourists are breaking records for the number of visits to the Maldives. According to the Association of Tour Operators of Russia (ATOR), in December 2020, the flow of tourists from Russia to the Maldives exceeded the indicators of December 2019 by almost 70% and set an absolute record in the entire history of Russian tourism to the Maldives. A year earlier, 83,369 Russians went to the Maldives to rest, this figure was 17.5% more than in 2018.
Despite the fact that, in general, at the end of 2020, the total number of Russian tourists visiting the Maldives turned out to be a quarter lower than the average annual indicators of 2019. In part, this situation was influenced by the closure of flights from April to June 2020 in connection with the COVID-19 pandemic. As a result, in the second quarter of 2020, the immigration authorities of the Maldives did not record any arrivals from Russia. However, since July, the tourist flow to the islands began to grow again, reaching record levels in December: in the last month of the year, a record 15 323 Russians visited the islands. In terms of the number of foreign tourists in the Maldives, Russians are in third place after residents of India and Great Britain, although earlier the best result of the Russian Federation in the Maldives was fifth in the tourist list. The share of Russians in the flow of foreign tourists to the islands increased from 5 to 15.6%.
The Maldives is traditionally considered one of the most expensive holiday destinations. The record demand for tours to these islands in ATOR is associated with the fact that in the context of a pandemic in the world a certain deficit of “winter” beach destinations of the premium segment has formed. Many Russians have been forced to give up foreign tours. Of those who nevertheless decided to go abroad, most visited the Maldives on New Year's holidays.
On the eve of ATOR published a rating of the most expensive tours of the year. Of the 10 destinations for which tourists paid the most money in 2020, the first 5 places were taken by tours to the Maldives. The most expensive family overseas tour of 2020 was the Maldives tour. Excluding air travel, the Russian family paid 25.764 million rubles for its organization.
Now the stars of Russian show business are actively involved in advertising of popular hotels in the Maldives. Some of them are actively promoting sea villas, where one night's stay costs about 300 thousand rubles.