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Visit Maldives kicks off first offline events in India post-reopening

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After the closure of the borders and travel restrictions were imposed, Visit Maldives continued to maintain destination presence across the Indian market as part of the global crisis marketing strategy.

The very first offline events in India kicked off on Tuesday with a high level press conference followed by a roadshow in Indian capital New Delhi.

Maldives will also be showcased at the South Asia’s Travel & Tourism Exchange (SATTE) in Delhi from March 24-26.

Tourism minister Dr Abdulla Mausoom, Visit Maldives Managing Director Thoyyib Mohamed and Dr Hussain Niyaz, the Maldivian high commissioner in India are leading the Maldivian delegation.

The press conference titled, ‘Maldives: Media Meet” was held Tuesday and featured addresses by the heads of the Maldivian delegation. Latest updates from the Maldives and the tourism industry were shared at the press conference, which was attended by key travel trade and mainstream media from the Delhi region.

Key topics of interest from the angles of tourism, foreign policy and marketing were discussed. These included the success story of the Maldives tourism during the pandemic, India becoming the top source market and the marketing plan for India, as well as the travel bubble between India and Maldives.

Updates on the vaccination programme and other important information for travellers were also shared.

Prior to the press conference and roadshow, the Visit Maldives team team attended meetings with Outbound Tour Operators Association of India (OTOAI), GoAir Airlines and Yatra to discuss collaborative efforts to promote the Maldives in the Indian market.

A meeting was also conducted with Thomas Cook during which the company remarked upon the success of the strategy during the pandemic and future marketing plans.

The press conference was shortly followed by the a dedicated roadshow, ‘Connect with Maldives, Your Safe Haven’, which targeted top travel trade of India.

The roadshow offered the opportunity for 11 companies from the Maldives tourism industry that participated at the event to connect with over 100 key travel trade partners from the Indian market to generate new business leads and engage in one-on-one networking opportunities.

From the overall destination perspective, a presentation highlighting destination information, key updates and travel information was given.

“The main marketing message communicated to the travel trade was that Maldives is one of the safest destinations to travel during this time due to the unique geographic isolation of the islands, the one island one resort together with the stringent health and safety protocols in place,” a statement issued by Visit Maldives read.

The event held at the Shangri-La Hotel in Delhi concluded with dinner and a raffle draw. Baglioni Resort Maldives and Adaaran Club Rannalhi sponsored the raffle prizes.

Maldives will take part in the South Asian Travel and Tourism Exchange (SATTE) in Delhi from March 24-26. SATTE is one of the leading B2B travel exchange shows held in India.

A total of 22 participants from 13 companies along with officials from Visit Maldives will take part in the event.

During SATTE, participants will have the opportunity to showcase their products, network with various key industry stakeholders, generate new business leads and engage in B2B sessions.

“The event will help further develop and strengthen the presence of the Maldives in the Indian market. The fair is the first event since the pandemic in which the tourism community will physically gather, marking the event as a highly important occasion,” Visit Maldives said.

“The three-day event is expected to attract a large number of visitors from India. Based on figures from 2019 the fair had over 1,000 participants, representation from 50 different countries, 28 Indian states and 50 cities from across India.”

The Maldives will be showcased at a 72sqm stand designed to represent the beauty and the natural environment of the country.

An online quiz will be conducted on information regarding the Maldives and visitors will have the opportunity to immerse themselves in the beauty of the Maldives through touchless 360° virtual images and videos.

To increase visibility of Maldives at the fair, an outdoor banner in a prime location at the entrance of the fair will showcase the beauty of the Maldives throughout the event.

There are several activities ongoing and planned for the Indian market to promote Maldives as a safe haven due to the stringent measures in place and naturally socially distanced islands.

Visit Maldives is currently collaborating with WeddingSutra, Thomas Cook, and MakeMyTrip.

Visit Maldives has also conducted media and travel agents familiarisation trips from Indian market in order to sustain the destination presence and increase the arrival numbers.

Figures published by the tourism ministry rank India as the top source market for tourism in the Maldives. As of March 17, the Maldives welcomed a total of 243,979 travellers, including 57,965 tourists from India.

Visit Maldives plans to continue this momentum of growth by conducting several marketing activities in India.

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Indian influencer Niki Mehra in Maldives

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Maldives Marketing and Public Relations Corporation (MMPRC/ Visit Maldives) hosted a familiarisation trip with Amilla Maldives for high-end influencer, Niki Mehra, from India to experience the luxury and romantic offerings of the Maldives from 3rd – 6th May 2024.

The familiarisation trip was a great opportunity to Niki Mehra, a renowned Indian model, fashion, beauty and travel content creator and social media influencer with over half a million followers who has carved a niche in the Indian fashion industry with her unique sense of style. During her time in the Sunny Side of Life, Niki Mehra showcased luxury to romantic experiences of the destination.

The trip promoted Maldives through social media platforms of Niki Mehra while highlighting experiential itinerary offerings of the Maldives. Additionally, the influencer trip assisted MMPRC in propelling growth in the luxury travel segment and honeymoon market by showcasing the Maldives as a premier honeymoon destination for the Indian travellers.

The Indian market has been a strong market for the Maldives over the years, currently ranked number 6 with 46,970 tourists as of 13th May 2024. Additionally, MMPRC showcased the Maldives in OTM and SATTE held earlier this year. MMPRC is committed to boosting the arrivals from the market and has exciting marketing activities planned for future, including joint campaigns, familiarisation trips, participation in major events and other campaigns which provides numerous opportunities to showcase the breathtaking Maldives to the market, attracting more Indian travellers.

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130 hotels in The Prestige Collection with 4 Maldives properties

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The Prestige Collection has reached 130 hotels in its portfolio, continuing to uphold quality and excellence as core pillars. It represents the most exclusive selection within Keytel, the world’s first alliance of independent hotels.

Since its establishment in 2007, The Prestige Collection has been dedicated to meeting the growing demand for luxury hotels, becoming a reference for hospitality industry specialists. Despite its focus on independent hotels, the collection has successfully attracted prestigious properties from international luxury chains such as Rosewood Villa Magna, Mandarín Oriental Ritz Madrid, and Fairmont Mayakoba in Riviera Maya. These hotels view The Prestige Collection as a complement to their commercial strategy for attracting luxury clientele.

With a prominent presence both nationally and internationally across 36 countries, The Prestige Collection shines in with four distinguished resorts: Baglioni Resort Maldives, Diamonds Athuruga Maldives Resort & Spa, Diamonds Thudufushi Maldives Resort & Spa, and Hideaway Beach Resort & Spa. Internationally, the collection boasts emblematic properties like Armani Dubai, Café Royal in London, The Pierre in New York, and Kappa Senses in Ubud, Bali, among others.

The collection categorises hotels into four distinctive categories, highlighting ideal places to disconnect, properties in vibrant urban settings, coastal options for those seeking serenity, and unique experiences for those seeking singularity.

Furthermore, this milestone coincides with the relaunch of its new experiential website platform. This platform offers users and industry professionals the opportunity to explore the collection in greater detail and drives qualified traffic to the official websites of member hotels.

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Waste Management Corporation (WAMCO) Marks a Significant Step Towards Transforming Urban Waste Management

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Waste Management Corporation (WAMCO) marked a significant step towards plastic waste management with the adoption of dedicated vehicles handed over to boost this transformation of urban waste management supported by The Coca-Cola Foundation (TCCF) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in the Maldives.  

In March 2024, UNDP Maldives officially handed over a fleet of six vehicles to WAMCO, which included two electric vehicles (EVs), as part of an initiative aimed at enhancing waste management across the Greater Male’ Area (GMA). This acquisition, facilitated through the financial support of TCCF paves the way for a crucial advancement in bolstering PET collection efforts and tackling the challenge of plastic waste in the Maldives.

“This initiative marks a significant step towards boosting recycling rates and combating environmental pollution in the Maldives,” stated Pek Chuan Gan, Deputy Resident Representative of UNDP Maldives speaking at the handover ceremony. “Integrating electric vehicles into WAMCO’s fleet and improving PET recycling processes not only lowers carbon emissions but also pioneers renewable energy use in waste management. It’s a vital move for steering the Maldives towards a sustainable and renewable-powered future.”

The provision of electric vehicles marks a continuation of UNDP Maldives’ support to the Government’s vision to introduce renewable energy in key sectors such as waste management that significantly contribute to the country’s renewable energy transition ambition. By embracing clean energy solutions, such as electric vehicles in waste management practices, the Maldives can further reduce its carbon footprint and move closer to achieving its renewable energy goals.

“Utilizing eco-friendly vehicles is a pivotal change for WAMCO, signifying a major leap towards modernizing waste management in the Maldives,” remarked Mujthaba Jaleel, Managing Director, from WAMCO. “This collaboration highlights the shared commitment to environmental stewardship and the potential for such partnerships to catalyse meaningful progress in sustainability and about the positive impact these vehicles will have on our operations and the environment.”

Representatives from UNDP Maldives, WAMCO, and The Coca-Cola Foundation’s unified efforts towards a sustainable future. Photo courtesy: CIAO Advertising.

“Our commitment goes beyond just recycling; it’s about fostering a culture of sustainability,” remarked Saadia Madsbjerg, President, Coca‑Cola Foundation and VP Community Affairs. “By enhancing waste management in the Maldives, we aspire to set a benchmark for environmental stewardship.”

For The Coca-Cola Foundation, together with the stakeholders, the aim is to propel Maldives towards a future where plastic circularity is not just envisioned but actively pursued. By channelling resources and expertise into the heart of waste management, TCCF has made a sizeable contribution in enhancing and attracting investment to this crucial sector in the Maldives. This initiative is a testament to TCCF’s commitment to fostering sustainable practices and promoting the reuse and recycling of plastics, thereby reducing environmental impact, and paving the way for a circular economy.

The fleet handover event held on March 18, 2024, served as a celebration of collaboration in waste management. Representatives from UNDP Maldives, WAMCO, The Coca-Cola Foundation, government officials, and stakeholders came together to mark this significant step and reinforced their collective dedication to building a more sustainable future for the Maldives.

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