The Maldives is in the Indian Ocean, a 10-14hr flight from the UK, around 370 miles southwest of Sri Lanka. It is made up of 1200 islands, stretching over 500 miles from north to south. The main arrival airport for all flights to the Maldives is Male's airport island (MLE).
The Maldives is famous for its great snorkelling, manta cleaning stations, whalesharks, shark dives and fast drift dives through channels. The water remains a constant 27-28 C year round.
Covid Travel Information
View entry requirements here on UK FCDO
A PCR test is no longer required to enter Maldives.
Entry requirements for Maldives are the same for all travellers, regardless of COVID-19 vaccination status.
All travellers must submit a self-declarative health declaration within 96 hours prior to travel online portal of Maldives Immigration, "Imuga", imuga.immigration.gov.mv.
All tourists will undergo non-intrusive temperature checks and screening on arrival, are required to wear face masks, social distancing at the airport, during domestic travel and in all enclosed public spaces. Most resorts have their own additional protocols
View the Maldives goverment guidance for travellers
From 18th March, when you travel to England from abroad you:
do not need to take any COVID-19 tests before you travel or after you arrive
do not need to fill in a UK passenger locator form
do not need to quarantine when you arrive
This applies whether you are vaccinated or not.
It includes people who are transiting through England.
Updated 8 JUL 2022
Weather and Climate
Whilst there are 2 monsoon seasons (Nov-Apr & May-Oct), the diving remains excellent year round. Diving operators will changes their dive sites in each season to find the best hot spots for the big fish! Traditionally, our summer months tend to be windier with a higher chance of rain, whilst the winter months are flatter. However, the seasons are much less predictable in reality and its a fabulous place to dive whatever time of year!
Our holidays to the Maldives can be quoted with most major airlines. If you would like to depart from a regional UK airport (eg. Glasgow/Edinburgh, Manchester, Birmingham or Gatwick) or have a specific airline you prefer to fly with, simply let us know in your booking request. Times and any applicable supplements will be confirmed by your travel consultant before you finalise your holiday. We are unfortunately not able to redeem airmiles on your behalf.
If you make your own flight arrangements to Male, please check the transfer arrangements before confirming your flights. Please do not finalise any flight arrangements yourself before your liveaboard space is confirmed as being held.
As most flights are not direct, it is simple to add a stop over en route - simply ask your travel consultant for a quote.
Sri Lanka is our most popular, up coming destination - with beautiful beaches, it's a great alternative to staying in the Maldives resorts. If you are feeling a bit more adventurous, why not head into the jungle for look for elephants and leopards. Or if you are a culture vulture, we highly recommend a Kandy city tour. The choice is yours!
As we are able to book most major airlines to the Maldives, you can also add a stop to break up your flight. Popular locations include Dubai, Doha and Abu Dhabi.
Arrange before you go
Regular Entry Requirements
UK passport holders are able to obtain a free 30 day visa on arrival. Do ensure your passport has 6 months validity from your return date to prevent any issues with immigration. It is your responsibility to ensure your passport is valid and you fulfil entry requirements. Regulations can change: please review current FCO advice: click here . If transiting via Sri Lanka you must have a visa prior to travel click here
Scuba Travel requires all of our customers to have diving insurance. Please make sure that you have appropriate cover for your diving activities.
We also strongly recommend you have travel insurance. It's worth taking out travel insurance once you have paid your deposit to ensure you are covered for unforeseen events and cancellation.
Find out more about our combined dive and travel policy click here
Your covid proof of vaccination must match your passport name and flight ticket name. Please speak to your local GP or check out the latest NHS advice on updating your NHS details or for other travel immunisations: click here
Preparing to fly
You will be able to manage your booking online once you have been ticketed (after you have paid your holiday balance). Most airlines will now enable you to select your seating at this point. There may be a small charge for prebookable seating before online check in opens. Please speak to the airline for more information about charges.
As you are flying with a scheduled airline, you will be able to check in online with your airline. Please visit their website for more information about when online check in opens.
An airport lounge is a great way to start your holiday or to while away flight connections in comfort. Scuba Travel works with Lounge Pass to offer a huge range of affordable airport lounges around the world.
Prebook your airport parking to save money! If you have a long way to travel, why not also look at booking an airport hotel. These aren't as expensive as you might think.
What happens when I arrive?
On arrival in the Maldives, you will need to clear immigration and collect your baggage. You will then be met outside of arrivals by a representative from your liveaboard or resort. They will be holding a board with either your destination or your name on it.
If you have any issues at all locating your rep, please turn left from arrivals and go to the information desk at Male airport. We have an emergency contact, manned by a member of the team here in the UK. Please call 0044 7747 488 002. We will be able to help your rep locate you in the airport.
If your holiday begins in Male you will be met and taken to your boat. The transfer takes around 20mins.
Many of our Maldives holidays will include either a domestic flight or seaplane transfer. It takes approx 45mins -1 hour to clear immigration and collect your baggage at Male airport. We endeavour to keep the transit between flights as short as possible and your transfer will normally take place within 3 hours of your international arrival, but please be aware, you may have to wait at the airport between flights.
The domestic terminal is right next door to arrivals. This has AC, bathrooms and a small cafe. You will usually be met by a rep, who will assist you in moving between the terminals. The baggage allowance on domestic flights is typically 20kgs hold and 5kgs hand baggage. Excess baggage is charged locally $2-$5/kg.
The seaplane check in desk is to your right on exiting the arrivals hall. You will check your bag in here and then be transferred to the seaplane terminal by bus. This has AC, bathrooms, a small cafe and shop. The seaplanes run regularly throughout the day and due to the way the scheduling is organised, the exact time of your seaplane cannot be confirmed prior to arrival in Male. Seaplanes do not run in the dark - the fist seaplane is around 06:00 Male time and ends around 16:00 Male time. The baggage allowance on seaplane flights is typically 20kgs hold and 5kgs hand baggage. Excess baggage is charged locally $2-$5/kg.
You will be taken back to Male airport in time for your international flight. Domestic flights and seaplanes will arrive in time for you to make your connections. Typically you will arrive at the airport 1 1/2- 2 hours before your flight time.
There is currently no departure tax when leaving the Maldives.
Scuba diving - Please book at the dive center on arrival
USD cash is the preferred currency. Credit & debit cards accepted although a surcharge may apply. A 12% local GST applies to all purchases made in the Maldives and will be added to bills locally.
Typically the Maldives has good mobile phone coverage throughout, although it is not 100 percent - please check with your phone contract provider for data roaming, charges and 3G availability.
Plugs and electricity
Either UK 3 pin or European 2 pin plugs. Please do not leave batteries charging unattended in your rooms.
Kit hire can be arranged in resort and is paid for locally
Single, 2 tank, whole day, early morning and night dives can all be arranged and paid for in resort
The dive centre has a small, limited shop on site
Free nitrox for certified divers
Deposits and Balances
A typical deposit for a holiday to Meeru Island is £400-£600 per person, although this will depend on your exact flight option and travel class. Larger deposits may be required for some flight options (eg premium economy/business class).
Ways to pay
We accept mastercard and visa debit or credit cards. If you would like a pay by link to complete check out via email please let us know and it can be set up for you. All non sterling card payments and UK business debit cards will be subject to the 3% surcharge. We do not take AMEX.
Alternatively, you are welcome to pay via bank transfer. Overseas bank transfers must add £6 to the sterling total to cover international handling fees.
We are not able to accept PayPal transactions or personal cheques.
If you have booked as part of a group, you can still call and pay directly without needing to go via your group leader. Please have your trip reference number to hand to help us locate your holiday as quickly as possible. You will receive a transaction receipt - your group leader will forward your ATOL certificate and booking confirmation
Return speedboat transfers from Male
7 nights accommodation on a full board basis (2 people sharing)
Your full board package includes breakfast, lunch and dinner
Government taxes - 12%GST, 10%SVG and $6pppn Green tax
Alcoholic and non alcoholic beverages - ask about upgrading the package to all inclusive
International flights from the UK
Scuba diving - Please book at the dive center on arrival
Tipping is entirely at your discretion. We do not make recommendations as to how much to tip. Should you wish to leave a tip for the guides and crew, it should reflect the level of service you have enjoyed.