Manila : Going ahead with the reputation it has garnered as one of the very few destinations to open to international tourism amid the pandemic, the Maldives is upping the ante by launching a "3V Tourism initiative".
'3V', which stands for "Visit, Vaccinate and Vacation", aims to offer travellers two doses of Covid-19 vaccines several weeks apart, boost long stays and promote the country as a safe destination during the pandemic. As part of this, it is mulling extending one-year visas to digital nomads who want to work in the Maldives.
It also launched the Maldives Border Miles programme in December last year to encourage repeat visits by tourists. Tourists who enroll in the three-tiered loyalty programme - Aida (bronze tier), Anantara (silver tier) and Abaarana (gold tier) - earn points based on the number of visits and duration of stay. Additional points will be awarded for visits to celebrate special occasions like birthdays/wedding anniversary or border crossing.
The island nation opened its doors for tourism last July 15. Initially only private resorts were opened, but now boutique and small hotels in the outer islands are also operating - "over 95 per cent of total beds are up and running."
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