FAQ for Maldives


Where is the Maldives?

The Republic of Maldives a chain of 1, 192 islands grouped into 26 atolls spread across 90,000 square kilometers. The tiny islands are located in the Indian Ocean, close to Sri Lanka and India. The average island size is around two square kilometers and there is only one resort per island, making the Maldives an extremely exclusive destination.


Do I need a visa to visit Maldives?

You do not require a visa prior to arrival in the Maldives. All tourists are granted a free 30-day tourist visa upon arrival. However, you must have a valid passport. If the passport expiry date falls within 30 days of arrival, tourists cannot extend their stay beyond the passport expiry date. Working/ Employment under a tourist visa is prohibited. Working visas are provided by the Ministry of Human Resources Employment and Labor.


What's the time difference?

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


When is the best time to visit Maldives?

December to April is the dry season and as such it is peak season for tourists. During this period resorts can be fully booked, and prices are at their highest. The Christmas-New Year period is the busiest period. Between May and November, the weather is still very warm and there is often sunshine. But the skies can become cloudy at times, humidity is higher, and rain is more likely. The transition months of November and April are said to be associated with increased water clarity and better visibility for divers.


Where is Velana International Airport?

The Airport is located roughly one mile from the capital city, on an adjacent island named Hulhule.


What is the capital city of the Maldives?

The Capital of the Maldives is "Male’'" pronounced "Maa-ley". Male’ is one of the smallest capital cities in the world. One third of the country’s population, about 100,000 people, live in Male’. Unlike any other island in the country, Male’ is a city of high-rise buildings and paved roads. While the government offices are located in one area, the main streets are lined with shops and offices. In the old bazaar area, which still houses the country’s hub of wholesale and retail trade, the lanes are so narrow that a single vehicle would find it difficult to navigate through, especially with its throngs of busy people.


What is the currency used?

The local currency is the Maldivian Rufiyaa but US Dollars are widely accepted everywhere. One dollar is equivalent to 15.42 Rufiyaa. You won’t find much need for local currency but if you wish to purchase any you can buy it at the foreign exchange counter at the airport. Keep your receipt as proof of purchase if you wish to exchange any back before departing.


How can I make a payment?

You can pay directly via the secure global payment gateway on our website. We accept Visa, Master Card and American Express Credit cards too.


How do I get confirmation of my booking?

Confirmation is instant. Just select your resort, arrival and departure dates, the number of rooms required with number of guests and press the ‘confirm’ button. Our automated system will direct you to next step and prompt you to enter your details.


Do you provide airport transfers to and from the resort?

Yes, we do, you can request them at the time of booking. The resort will arrange a seaplane or speedboat transfer to tie in with your international arrival/departure.


What is the check-in process?

Just show your reservation voucher to the airport representative on arrival. Then we will transfer you to the resort via seaplane or speedboat.


Do you have a cancellation policy?

Yes, we do.


What is your office address and contact details?

Southern Holidays, 189/15, Sama Mawatha, Nawala Road, Nugegoda, Sri Lanka. Tel: +94 114 323 724, Email: info@southernholidays.com Website: www.southernholidays.com


What types of water activities are available in Maldives?

Snorkeling and scuba diving in the warm, turquoise waters are some of the most popular activities in the Maldives, in fact the Maldives is renowned for it. All kinds of other watersports including canoeing, sailing, wind surfing, parasailing, deep sea fishing, jet skiing and water skiing are also very common. You can charter a yacht, perhaps with a captain and chef, to sail among the islands or go sunset fishing.


What type of clothing do you recommended?

Light clothing is ideal for the tropical climate. There is no dress code at the resorts (but you’re requested not to wear swimwear inside the restaurants). Ladies will find that high heels aren’t particularly suitable for the sandy ground on the islands. Women are also advised to cover bare shoulders and knees if they are visiting an inhabited island community on a day trip out of respect for the conservative local culture.
*Nudism is prohibited


Is anything else prohibited in Maldives?

  • Alcohol
  • Pork
  • Narcotics, illicit drugs and psychotropic substances
  • Pornographic materials
  • Gunpowder and explosives
  • Weapons, firearms and ammunition
  • Spear-guns
  • Dogs
  • Idols used for worship


There is also a ban on removing the following items from the beach:

  • Coral
  • Shells
  • Any other items/creatures from the marine or beach environment

Please also note that shark fishing is illegal in the Maldives and all ray species are protected in the Maldives. Topless sunbathing is illegal.


Anything else I should pack?

A: Bring plenty of sunblock as the sun is extremely strong in the Maldives, we recommend Factor 30 at the very least. A hat is also a good idea, and a t-shirt or rash shirt to protect your back from sunburn whilst snorkeling. You may also want to bring mosquito repellent to wear in the evenings. We do everything we can to reduce the number of mosquitos on the islands, but you may wish to take it as an extra precaution.


What is the climate like in the Maldives?

The Maldives has a tropical climate with an average daily temperature of 30°C. It rarely gets any cooler than 25°C (even at night or in rainy season). Days are sunny and humid but there’s always a refreshing, gentle sea breeze. There are two basic seasons; dry and wet. The dry season is from December to April. You will see little rainfall and slightly longer daylight hours during this season. During the wet season, May through November, more wind and rain is experienced, although temperatures are still warm.


Will I be expected to tip?

Tipping is not very common in Maldives as most resorts and restaurants automatically add a 10% service charge to the bill. Taxi drivers do not get tipped.


What are taxi fares like??

Tourists normally pay a US$2.00 or 30 Rufiyaa flat rate to any destination. You may be charged an additional 5 Rufiyaa per item of luggage.


Could I take liquor into 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 shop, these items will be bonded in Customs on your arrival and released on your departure. Nobody is allowed to bring liquor, beer or related products from resorts to Male’ (or other non-resort islands) and the capital city’s hotels do not offer liquor, beer and related products.


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

Voltage in Maldives is 110 or 220 volts, depending on your location. The majority of sockets are the British 3-pin variety, but some sockets are suitable for European two-pin plugs. Most of the hotels supply adaptors in the villas also hair dryers.


Is the Maldives safe for visitors?

Yes, Maldives is probably one of the safest places in the world.


Is the tap water safe to drink?

The water is drinkable, and most hotels also offer bottled water.


Is English widely spoken?

Yes, so there will be no problems in communicating with people in many hotels, restaurants and on the public transport. We also have multi-lingual guest relations officers.


Can I use my Visa Card, Master Card, and Debit Card to take cash out?

Most of the local and souvenir shops in Male’ accept all major credit cards but none of these shops can offer you cash-back from your card.


Are there ATMs in the capital city, island or anywhere else?

There are ATMs located in Male’ including HSBC, Bank of Maldives, Bank of Ceylon and State Bank of India. There are also ATMs at the airport.


Are children allowed at the resort?

Yes, children are welcome at all of our resorts.


Why is Maldives a favorite among honeymooners?

The Maldives offers the ultimate in romance and seclusion. Couples can immerse themselves in the incredible beauty of the islands and the casual island pace of life. With mesmerizing sunsets and lush natural beauty, the Maldives simply radiates romance. Enjoy a leisurely breakfast brought to your overwater bungalow by boat. Discover an idyllic island for a private picnic for two. Arrange a traditional Maldivian wedding ceremony or renewal of vows. Or simply take a leisurely stroll along a secluded white sand beach and enjoy the spectacular scenery.


Are there hospitals and medical facilities?

The Maldives has modern 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.