Guesthouses in Male’ to reopen on December 14th

Aerial view of Maldivian capital Male' City | Photo: Corporate Maldives

Male’, Maldives – Tourism Minister Abdulla Mausoom has revealed that the guesthouses and hotels in Male’ area would be given the permission to start operating and open up their services starting from December 14.

This was revealed by Minister Mausoom in a tweet in which he said that it’s finally happening and that the guesthouses and hotels in Greater Male’ area will be given the permission to start operating starting from December 14th.

He also said that a 72 hour negative exit PCR test would be required for all the tourists coming to Maldives and further went on to thank the President, Health Protection Agency (HPA) and Health Emergency Operation Centre (HEOC) saying that now we can welcome 2021 in style.

While guesthouses in different areas of Maldives are being given the permission to reopen, Tourism Ministry has released a certain set if guidelines which must be followed for the safety of both locals and tourists. According to the guidelines, all guesthouses are required to have a special focal point as well as separate rooms for isolation.

In addition to this, posters indicating safety guidelines such as social distancing are also to be placed around the guesthouse and a certain amount of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) must also be available at the premises. Staff are also required to have a special uniform for work and should be able to take a shower before returning home. The Tourism Ministry has also mandated it for locals of islands with operating guesthouses to wear masks in public.

Guesthouses in inhabited islands were initially closed on March 17th due to the Covid-19 pandemic. This resulted in a huge loss to the guesthouse industry and tourism in Maldives itself. The guesthouses later reopened on October 15 as Maldives tries to overcome the loss in tourism. Till now Tourism Ministry has given approval to 130 guesthouses to reopen their services and near 100,000 tourists have arrived since border reopening.

There are over 10,000 guesthouse beds in 86 islands of Maldives and the job of over 6000 Maldivians is related to the guesthouse industry making it an essential part of the Maldives’ economy. 10 percent of tourist arrivals are also to the guesthouses.