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Maldives expects 10 daily international flights once border reopens
Maldives Airports Company Limited (MACL), which operates Maldives’ national airport Velana International Airport (VIA), expects to see 10 daily international flights when the country reopens its borders next month.
MACL officials were summoned for a meeting with the Parliament’s State-owned Enterprises Committee on Sunday afternoon.
Speaking at the meeting, MACL’s Terminal Manager Ibrahim Hussain said 10 international airlines have reserved slots with Velana Inernational Airport in preparation of the reopening of Maldives’ borders.
This includes many of the top tourist carriers to Maldives.
Starting July 1, SriLankan Airlines wants to operate three daily flights between Colombo and Male, while Qatar Airways plans to fly once a day on the Doha-Male sector.
However, most airlines wants to begin flights from July 15. That include:
Emirates: one daily
Etihad Airways: twice a week
Hong Kong Airlines: twice a week
IndiGo: two daily
Singapore Airlines: one daily
Silk Air: two daily
Turkish Airlines: five days a week, two services per day
While Velana International Airport is all geared up for the “new normal,” the officials revealed that Maldives may welcome fewer than the anticipated number of flights when the country reopens the borders on July. “We expect flight movements to be three times lower than during peak season,” they added.
Moosa Solih said that VIA’s international arrivals terminal previously catered to 1,000 passengers at any given time. However with the safety measures in place, this will be cut down to 570. Moreover, the capacity of the international departures terminal will also be reduced from 1,200 to 750 passengers.
Since the closure of the country’s borders on March 27, the VIA handled some 8,000 international passengers; 7,000 passengers who departed Maldives on repatriation flights, and 1,000 passengers who arrived in Maldives on repatriation flights.
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