The 787-10 Dreamliner was welcomed with a water salute at the Velana International Airport Sunday evening. It was followed by a ceremony held at Maamehi Executive Lounge of Velana International Airport. Gifts were exchanged between Singapore airlines and MACL officials while the crew was received with garlands in welcome.
The Managing Director of Maldives Marketing & Public Relations Corporation Thoyyib Mohamed officiated the ceremony. He highlighted the partnership between Singapore Airlines and MMPRC in tourism promotion while noting the importance of direct flights from Singapore to Maldives. Further commenting on the significance of the connections he said “Theres no doubt that direct connections from a massive international hub such as Singapore will help Maldives tourism sector with arrivals from major markets. Maldives have numerous luxury properties and it is only befitting that we have such (as the Dreamliner flight) travel options to Maldives”.
Moosa Solih, Acting Managing Director of MACL, Hussain Jaleel, Chief Executive of Maldives Civil Aviation Authority, and Ahmad Zuhri, Singapore Airlines Country Manager for Maldives, were also present at the ceremony.
Currently there are regular flights by Singapore Airlines, Scoot and Silk Air between Singapore and Maldives. Direct connections to Singapore facilitate arrivals from China, Japan, S. Korea, USA, and Australia all significant markets for Maldives. Singapore itself is a promising market for Maldives in the ASEAN region. This year, from January to July, 7927 Singaporeans visited Maldives a growth of 14.5% when compared with the same period of 2018. MMPRC is currently planning and executing several marketing activities to access the ASEAN market. This includes a partnership with Singapore Airlines for a number of promotional activities. Moreover, Maldives brand and its products were featured in the most popular tourism fair of Singapore, NATAS Travel Fair last month.