Aeroflot resumes operation to Maldives

Flag carrier and largest airline of Russian Federation, Aeroflot has resumed operation to the Maldives after suspending services due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The airline resumed operation between Moscow and Velana International Airport on Friday with over 170 tourists arriving on the flight.

Two scheduled flights will operate between the destinations every week. The flights will arrive in Maldives on Thursdays and Sundays, and depart on Fridays and Sundays. The Maldives tourism industry, which has been suffering the brunt of the economic decline due to the COVID-19 pandemic, has described the resumption of flights as a new hope for the declining industry.

The Maldives closed its borders to tourists back in March as a precautionary measure against COVID-19. Since it reopened its borders mid-July, several airlines gave resumed operation to the Maldives, including Qatar Airways, Turkish Airlines, Etihad and Sri Lankan Airlines. India’s Air India and Go India has also resumed operations.

11,000 tourists have visited the Maldives since its borders reopened. This is far below the figures initially estimated by the government. Although the government expected 800,000 tourists to visit the Maldives this year, newly appointed Tourism Minister Abdulla Mausoom has stated that the 120,000 tourists will arrive during the remaining three months of the year.