Kooddoo Airport welcomes first private jet

Kooddoo Airport on Sunday celebrated its first private jet operation.

The jet landed in Kooddoo Sunday afternoon.

Kooddoo Airport, located on the island of Kooddoo in Gaafu Alifu atoll, was initially opened on September 10, 2012 with twice daily service from the main Velana International Airport by flagship carrier Maldivian. The airport was developed with a 1,200 metre runway.

The airport was upgraded in 2017. It now features a Code C runway measuring 1,800 metres in length, and is able to accommodate Airbus A320 and Boeing 737 aircrafts as well as all categories of private jets.

It also features a VIP lounge along with VIP accommodation facilities.

Kooddoo Airport serves Mercure Maldives Kooddoo Resort, located on the same island, as well as several other resorts in the atoll, including The Residence Maldives at Falhumaafushi and The Residence Maldives at Dhigurah, and Pullman Maldives Maamutaa.

The first private jet operation at Kooddoo Airport comes amidst increasing pressure on the main Velana International Airport, especially during the holiday season.

The Maldives main airport has set multiple new records on runway and flight movements over the past year.

December to April is considered the peak tourist season, as these months constitute summers in Maldives. Between December and April, the islands boast of dry weather, making it ideal for tourists to travel and enjoy the tropical environment.

Resorts across the archipelago organise special activities for the festive season, which falls during the peak tourist season.

Over a million tourists from across the globe visit the Indian Ocean island nation every year to holiday in one of the 154 resorts and 500 plus guesthouses located in all corners of the country. The multi-billion dollar tourism industry, which is the country’s main economic activity, relies heavily on the domestic transport infrastructure, especially air travel.

Maldives, the most dispersed country on the planet with 1,192 islands spread over roughly 90,000 square kilometres, already has 14 airports, including four international airports. The government has contracted both local and international companies to develop additional domestic airports across the archipelago in a bid to boost tourism.

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