Nikolai: First tourist of 2023

The Maldives has welcomed the first tourist visitor for this year, Nikolai Stratichuk from Russia with a special ceremony held at Velana International Airport (VIA) Sunday morning.

It is a fantastic start to what promises to be a fantastic year for the Maldives tourism industry. The first visitor for this year arrived on Etihad fight Etihad Airways EY278 at around 6:05am.

He was greeted by senior officials from the Maldives Marketing and Public Relations Corporation (MMPRC/Visit Maldives), along with executives from the Ministry of Tourism, Maldives Immigration and Maldives Airports Company Limited (MACL). Nikolai was accompanied on this trip by his family. This is his first visit to the Maldives.

The first visitor received a 5 night stay at Reethi Faru Resort. Other special gifts were also conferred to the first visitor of 2023, including gifts from MMPRC, the Ministry of Tourism, MACL and Dhiraagu.

The Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director (CEO and MD) of MMPRC expressed his delight with the awards and accolades that Maldives received during the past year. He stated that: “MMPRC and the Maldives Tourism Industry’s concerted drive to provide visitors with options to relax and rejuvenate after the effects of the global pandemic bore fruit as hundreds of thousands of visitors flocked to the Maldives with the assurances of a safe vacation. Thanks to ‘natural social distancing’ as an archipelago nation, the safety of holidaymakers in the Maldives is further enhanced under our distinctive ‘one island, one resort’ concept and close attention to covid safety guidelines at every turn. This past year has been one of immense success to the Maldives, winning award after award. We welcome the first visitor of 2023 with a smile on our face, and the aim in our hearts to maintain the successes of last year.”

By the end of the fourth quarter of the preceding year, MMPRC had conducted over 88 marketing campaigns, 42 Fairs, 06 Roadshows, 10 Virtual Events, 17 FAM Trips, and 10 Other events were executed worldwide by the 4th Quarter of 2022 to promote Maldives as a tourist destination. The greatest testament to the success of these activities came at the end of last year, as the Maldives secured the title of ‘World’s Leading Destination’ (among several other accolades) at the 2022 World Travel Awards, globally recognised as the hallmark of industry excellence. This was the third consecutive year that the Maldives had successfully earned this prestigious title, a shining testimony of the trust placed in the ‘magic of Maldivian hospitality’ by travellers from all over the globe.

The national tourist arrivals target set by President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih for the year 2022 was also reached in December 2022, as the Maldives welcomed our 1.6 millionth visitor for the year two weeks ahead of the end of the 2022. Last year, MMPRC also secured the title of ‘World’s Leading Tourist Board’ for the first time in the nation’s history. Throughout the year the Maldives has also won several other awards while resorts, properties, tour operators, and travel agencies also won individual awards in the global arena.

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