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Pre-Departure Guide

Maldives Island Hopping

Hey there Indy fam!

Get packing as it's almost time to start your Maldives Island Hopping adventure! 

By now you will have received an email from us with your Travel Voucher.

 

This has all the necessary information you need about the tour. 
Please show a copy of this to your Indy Escapes rep at check-in. No need to print, electronic copy is fine.

On this page we have the following useful information;

1. Getting there

2. Where to find us on Day 1

3. Start/Finish times of tour

4. Where to stay before/after your tour

5. Entry Visa

6. Budgeting for your tour

7. Currency info

8. Packing List

Make sure you bookmark this page and keep handy with you on your travels.​

Don't forget to check out the Maldives section on our FAQ's page for any questions you may still have. 

If you can't find what you're looking for you can always email our helpful team and we'll get back to you ASAP. 

GETTING THERE

Malé Airport:

All flights into the Maldives arrive in Malé: Valena International Airport (MLE)

If you are arriving before Day 1 of tour, here is some useful information to get into the city centre from the airport.

Taxi:

Hulhumale Town Centre & Most Hotels: 10 min (cost 100 Rufiyaa)

Male Town Centre & Most Hotels: 10 min (cost 100 Rufiyaa)

All Taxis paid for in Rufiyaa and in cash only.

Shuttle Bus:

Airport transfer shuttle buses leave from outside the Airport terminal. Buses depart every 30 minutes beginning on the hour at a cost of 20 Rufiyaa. Buses depart to and from both Malé and Hulhumale Town Centres. Tickets are bought from the driver and must be paid in local currency Rufiyaa (cash only).

End of tour included transfers:

Your tour includes transfers back to the Airport at the conclusion of your tour. These transfers take approximate 45 minutes from the island of Maafushi. 

Your Indy Escapes rep will assist you during the week with booking in these transfers.

WHERE TO FIND US

We know not everyone can read a map, so lets just keep this simple :) 

  • When you arrive at Malé International Airport, simply find the arrivals hall (where you walked through customs and into the airport).

  • Search for Information desk C7 (to the right once you exit customs), where you'll find your Indy Escapes Rep who will be waiting for you there.

  • The airport is very small, so it will be very easy to find us. If you can't find us, we'll find you!

  • That's it. Too easy!

  • In case you are delayed and miss the tour start time, we'll be in touch to help you.

START / FINISH TIMES

CHECK IN:

Meet your Indy Escapes Rep for check-in at Malé International Airport information desk (out front of the arrivals hall) between 12:00pm to 1:00pm on Saturday (Day 1 of tour). If arriving later than midday, please get in touch ASAP.

We will have a short welcome meeting and say hello to the rest of our group before departing the the port via speedboat for our first stop for the week, the island of Dhigurah. 


LUNCH: You will be encouraged to grab some lunch before we depart, as lunch is not provided on day 1. Your Indy Escapes rep will show you where the food court is at the airport so you can easily grab some food or snacks before we transfer to our first island. Dinner will be at 7pm at our first hotel.

CHECK OUT:

The tour ends the following Saturday morning at 8.30am, after our final breakfast together.


We have included Airport Transfers on the final morning available at 8am, 1230pm and 500pm. Travel time to the airport is approx 45min. If you need to book an alternative time, these can be arranged at an additional cost, payable direct to the transfer company. Our Indy Escapes rep can assist in organising these transfers for you if necessary.

WHERE TO STAY

If you are getting in a day or two before the start of your tour with us, check out our info page HERE with recommendations of where to stay. 

We recommend getting in at least the night before to avoid any possible delays if flying in on Day 1 of tour.

ENTRY VISA / DECLARATION FORM

To enter the Maldives, you will need to fill out an Entry Declaration form online before arrival. Once completed, take a screenshot to show the customers officer. Note: There is no cost for this entry visa. 

Here is the link. https://imuga.immigration.gov.mv/ethd 

Note these few bits of info for the form; 

- Port of entry: Valana Int Airport Malé 

- Select Resort: K.Maafushi 

- Select Guesthouse: Kaani Grand Seaview

MONEY STUFF & BUDGETING FOR YOUR TOUR

Although the Maldives is known as one of the most expensive tourist destinations in the world with it's private resorts often frequented by the rich and famous, by doing a tour with us and visiting some of the local islands it can be more affordable and realistic for the everyday traveller.  

Throughout the week we have many inclusions that will keep your costs down, but as a guide most people bring approx $500-750 USD per person spending money for the week. 


This will cover any additional excursions you want to do, additional meals and drinks (alcohol), and tips for the local hotel staff. 


IMPORTANT: Please note that excursions are required to be paid for in cash in USD. There is an ATM at the airport in Malé if you prefer not to carry cash over with you from home, but this only dispenses local Maldivian Currency and the exchange rates at the airport are not favourable to tourists.

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Although Cash is King here in the Maldives, there are some places that willingly accept card. If possible, download your digital card to your phone wallet as most banks will charge less fees when paying this way rather than using your physical card. 

Tipping: Tipping is not compulsory and it’s entirely up to you if you decide to.  The locals we work with in the Maldives do an amazing job and you will see them always take incredible footage for everyone, go above and beyond to ensure you have the best week of your life on our tours. You will have the opportunity to show your gratitude to them at the end of the tour.

The amount you tip is entirely a personal preference, however as a guideline we suggest USD$20. It’s definitely not expected but is very much appreciated.

CURRENCY

Maldivian Rufiyaa is the local currency but US Dollars are widely used and accepted. There is a currency exchange at the airport where you can buy Maldivian Rufiyaa, however we recommend exchanging for USD before you get to the Maldives and use that as your main currency choice. You are also able to pay for all of your excursions in USD. 

NOTE: The locals will not accept any USD notes with slight tears/rips in them, so ensure you get clean notes. 

Hold onto your receipt from the currency exchange booths so that at the end of your stay, you can change any left over Maldivian Rufiyaa back to your currency of origin at the airport, as it is a non-convertible currency outside of the Maldives. 

Remember to check XE.com for the most up to date rates you should be expecting to get. You can download the app to your phone for easy conversions when you are there.

WHAT TO PACK

Need some help deciding what stays and what goes? We've put together our handy little packing list HERE to get you started. 

One major thing to note is that the Maldives is a predominately Muslim country so it is important that we respect their culture in our clothing. On the local islands we visit, there are allocated tourist beaches in which you can be free to wear bikini's (strictly no nudity). Outside of those allocated areas, you must cover up a respectful amount (shoulders & knees). 

However, with our visits to the private islands during the week, you are free to wear your usual swimwear on all beaches with no restrictions.

PHONE: We understand that some of you need to be connected while you are away. Ensure that your phone is unlocked before you leave so you can purchase a Maldivian SIM card at the airport ($30 for 17gb worth of data for the week). If you don't need 24/7 connection, you can rely on the free wifi at the hotels throughout the week. 

ALCOHOL

As the Maldives is predominately a Muslim country, it is also a 'dry' country, meaning that alcohol is prohibited on the local islands. Much like the dress code, the law on this does not apply on the private islands and you are free to drink alcohol there. 


Although it is illegal to drink alcohol on the local islands, the locals have been quite creative in getting around the law and are permitted to drink while out at sea, so we are able to do the same while out on our day trips. Your Indy Escapes rep will help inform you when it is OK to do so. 


IMPORTANT: Do not pack alcohol or purchase any on transit as your bags will be scanned upon arrival into the Maldives.

ELECTRICITY

Electricity supply is 220V to 240V, 50Hz AC. The standard socket is the UK-style three-pin, although there are some variations in which European, US and Australian plugs also work. An international adaptor can be useful. Our hotels have a limited supply of adaptors you can utilise.

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