Maldives becomes first country to offer traveller loyalty rewards

Maldives becomes the first country in the world to offer a traveller loyalty reward program: Regular visitors will receive points towards perks

  • Maldives Border Miles will reward tourists going up three tiers of membership
  • Tourists will earn points for each visit with extra points for special occasions 
  • The program will start on December 1 as the country seeks to bring back tourists 

The Maldives has become the first country in the world to offer a traveller loyalty rewards program.

The south Asian country will give points towards perks for regular visitors, it announced.

Maldives Border Miles will reward tourists for regular visits, with members progressing up three tiers: Aida (Bronze), Antara (Silver) and Abaarana (Gold).

The three names come from Divehi, the country’s main local language and the program will begin on December 1 this year, as the country seeks to draw back tourists during the coronavirus pandemic.

The Maldives has become the first country in the world to offer a traveller loyalty rewards program

Points will be awarded on each border occasion, with more given for visits on special occasions, and regular visitors will earn special privileges and move up the three tiers.

Maldives Immigration said: ‘Maldives Border Miles is a three-tiered loyalty program focused on tourism promotion. 

‘Tourists enrolled to this program will earn points for each border crossing. Additional points are rewarded for the visits on special occasions. 

‘Once the tourist reaches to a tally of a specific amount of points, privileges are rewarded with amazing benefits. 

‘As they move up the tiers, privileges are enhanced, and benefits are made exclusive.’

It is not yet known what perks will be given to customers but industry experts have hailed the innovative move by the country’s tourism board. 

Scott Keyes, founder of the Scott’s Cheap Flights newsletter, told CNN: ‘It is perhaps the most innovative move by a country’s tourism board since Iceland’s “free stopover en route to Europe” program.

‘Most tourism boards focus solely on glitzy ad campaigns and Photoshopped spreads, but this campaign from Maldives is both new and unique.’ 

The Maldives was one of the first countries to reopen its borders during the coronavirus pandemic on July 15, having closed them on March 27. 

Pictured: Abdulla Shahid, Foreign Minister of Maldives, speaks in a pre-recorded message which played during the 75th session of the United Nations General Assembly on Tuesday

Tourism accounts for a majority of the country’s foreign exchange earnings, with around 1.7 million tourist arrivals recorded in 2019.

It currently requires all tourists and short term visitors to present a negative PCR test for Covid-19 on arrival.

The test and negative PCR certificate must be issued no more than 72 hours prior to departure.

Screening procedures are in place for passengers on arrival, with quarantine facilities set up to isolate any suspected cases of coronavirus. 

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