VISITING MALDIVES

Do I need a visa before I arrive in Maldives, if I am visiting as a Tourist ?

No, you will be granted a free entry visa on arrival. Depending on your financial status, you can apply for a maximum period of thirty days. A ninety-day visa is granted for nationals of SAARC countries. All visitors need a valid travel document. If a passport expiry date falls within 30 days of arrival, tourists cannot extend their stay beyond the passport expiry date. Working / employment under tourist visa is prohibited. Working visas are provided by the Department of Immigration and Emigration.

How long can I stay in Maldives ?

Normally on a single entry, you can stay up to 90 days. This is subject to conditions. Further details from www.immigration.gov.mv

What should I do, if I need to extend my visa ?

You have to submit a Visa Extension form to the Head Office of the Department of Immigration and Emigration before the expiry of your current visa. Again you might have to prove your financial status for the duration of stay.

Can I go as a tourist and get employed in Maldives ?

No. A tourist visa will not be transferred to a resident permit to work. Resident Permit is issued to expatriates who enter Maldives with a valid Work Permit.

How do I assure myself that I will be given a Resident Permit to work in Maldives ?

Make sure that you receive a copy of the Work Permit from your employer, issued by the Department of Immigration and Emigration before you leave your home country.

How can I check myself that the Work Permit I have received from my Employer is valid ?

Email a scanned copy of the “Employment Approval” to the High Commission in order to verify the authentication, prior to your travel to the Maldives.

Can I marry a Maldivian while in Maldives and apply for a Marriage Visa ?

No. Your intention to get married to a Maldivian should be submitted in writing to the Department of Immigration and Emigration prior to your arrival in the Maldives. (A fax to +960-321100 is also accepted).

How do I do that, if I am already in Maldives ?

You have to travel out of Maldives, and send a letter to the Department of Immigration and Emigration, stating your intention and re-enter.

What vaccinations should I have ?

Normally, no vaccinations are required by the Maldivian authorities. However, if you are from a Central African nation or South American, or if you have traveled through these areas to get to the Maldives, you need to have a valid certificate indicating that you have been vaccinated against yellow fever. If you want to be extra careful, do consult your personal physician for his recommendations.

Will I be able to use my electrical equipment in the Maldives?

Voltage in Maldives is 110 or 220 volts, depending on your location. An adapter is recommended for using appliances you bring with you. Most major hotels provide hair dryers and other amenities.

Can I use my Visa Card, Master Card, and Debit Card to get cash from the bank ?

Most of the local and souvenir shops in Male' accept all major credit cards but none of these shops can get you cash from your card. There are two or three merchants who can get you limited cash and this is only possible during weekdays as these merchants will be issuing you a cash check which you will have to en-cash it from the bank. One bank in the Maldives offers encashment of credit cards. However the withdrawals are well limited.

Are there hospitals and good medical facilities ?

Maldives has excellent medical and dental services, pharmacies, a large government hospital and many private clinics in the capital city of Male', all of the resorts are also equipped with medical facilities and clinics.

Could I bring liquor to the Maldives ?

Nobody is allowed to bring in liquor to Maldives, unless he or she has a special import license for liquor, beer and related products. If somebody has bought liquor and beer and related items on his/her way to Maldives from a duty free center, then products should be bonded at Customs on their arrival to Maldives; goods will be released on their departure.

Alcoholic beverages are available to Hotel Guests.

HOLIDAYING IN MALDIVES

What's the best time to visit Maldives ?

If you are looking for a few extra hours of sunshine then you should visit the Maldives between December and April, which is the dry season. This is the high season, however, and resorts can be fully booked and prices are higher than the rest of the year. The Christmas-New Year period is the busiest and most expensive part of the high season. Between May and November it is still warm, but the skies can be cloudy, humidity is higher and rain is more likely. This is the low season, and there are fewer tourists and prices are lower. The transition months of November and April are said to be associated with increased water clarity and better visibility for divers.

What is the time difference ?

Maldives is five hours ahead (GMT +05:00) of Greenwich Mean Time (GMT).

Is the water safe to drink ?

Each resort has its own water desalination plant. Bottled water is readily available in all islands.

Where is the best area to stay ?

All the hotels in Maldives have an excellent transportation system, so visitors can easily reach other islands, no matter where they stay. Most hotels are located on their own private islands or individual islands where only a few resorts exist along the waterfront areas. All offer a high standard of service and unless you need to be in a particular spot, it really does not matter where you stay.

What is the currency used ?

Maldives has its own currency called "Rufiyaa (Rf)”. One United States Dollar is equivalent to Rf. 15.42 (Maldives Monetary Authority buying rate) and this value does not change much.

How do I book a travel package to the Maldives ?

Find your choice of travel agent, safari or the resort island from the website of the Maldives Tourism Promotion Board (MTPB); http://www.visitmaldives.com and for more information you may visit the website of the Ministry of Tourism; http://www.tourism.gov.mv