The Maldives Marketing & Public Relations Corporation has announced a new tourism strategy for 2020.
The plan includes a stronger focus on promoting the rich culture of the destination, as well as developing niche markets such as MICE, culture and sports tourism.
The Maldives is a destination traditionally known for its high-end resort accommodation popular with honeymooners, however, next year will see a stronger focus by MMPRC on promoting the diverse range of activities available to tourists such as beach volleyball, badminton and surfing.
Furthermore, with the growing demand for experiential travel by holidaymakers, the corporation’s marketing activities will also aim to promote the rich local culture of the inhabited islands that surround the destination’s resort islands.
This will be achieved by developing a strategy centred around cultural tourism to help showcase Maldivian life to visitors through local cuisine, cultural performances, traditional handicrafts and heritage sites.
In terms of MICE tourism, the country is encouraging the growth of hotels and resorts with infrastructure for events and conferences in order to attract business events, as well as special interest groups, keen on culture and sports.
The marketing strategy will be implemented through activities such as trade roadshows, media familiarisation trips, plus joint marketing campaigns with airlines and trade partners.
Speaking about the new tourism strategy, Thoyyib Mohamed, managing director for MMPRC, said: “The Maldives is well-known for its luxury and honeymoon product however during the last five years, the destination has also seen a growth in the number of families who visit, plus an increased interest in diving and our local island culture.
“We have welcomed 19 new properties during last year and this increase in hotel product is testament to the huge growth in the market and is a positive move for the economy.”
Thoyyib also commented on the visitor arrivals to the Maldives.
He added: “The UK is an extremely important market for us and has seen the strongest progress for year-round growth.
“We welcomed a total of 114,602 UK visitors in 2018 which saw a ten per cent increase compared to visitor arrivals in 2017, and this year alone seen over 1.2 million tourists visit from all markets already.”
In total, the Maldives has projected that the destination will welcome 1.5 million international tourists in 2019, and it is hoped this figured will increase to 2.5 million tourists per year by the end of 2023.
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