The Maldives has become the first country to launch its own loyalty programme, whereby travellers earn points and bonuses as a reward for visiting. Rose Dykins reports
The Maldives has become the first destination to launch its own loyalty scheme, whereby members earn points each time they spend a holiday there.
Maldives Border Miles has three tiers – Aida (bronze), Antara (silver) and Abaarana (gold) – which require visitors to accumulate 500 points, 2,000 points and 4,000 points, respectively. Members earn 50 points simply for crossing the border into the Maldives, and 5 points per night of their stay.
Any tourist travelling to the Maldives can enrol in Maldives Border Miles, and it’s possible to register when submitting the mandatory Traveller Health Declaration form before departure and selecting “holiday” as the purpose of their visit.
Bonus points are awarded to those who visit the Maldives for special occasions – such as honeymoons, anniversaries or birthdays (30 points each) – and points can also be earned for taking part in activities such as diving, island hopping and watersports with the scheme’s partners (5 points).
There is also a “seasonal bonus” of 20 points for those who visit between June 1 and August 31 each year.
Rather than offering redeemable rewards, Maldives Border Miles offers benefits to members based on their tier. Currently, the scheme’s partners that provide these benefits appear to be limited to the Marina @ Crossroads – a multi-island leisure destination in the Kaafu Atoll, a 15-minute speedboat ride from the capital of Malé – and Maldives Immigration.
For example, Aida members receive 5-10 per cent discounts off certain dining, diving and spa experiences at Marina @ Crossroads, while Antara members also benefit 10-15 per cent discounts and a “privileged immigration clearance” upon arrival and departure. Abaarana members get the same, with 10-20 per cent discounts.
The launch of Maldives Border Miles could set an interesting precedent if other nations follow suit, and reward tourists for their loyalty to encourage return visits, in the same way that airlines and hotels do.
In Globetrender’s 2021 Travel Trend Forecast , “Utopian Workations” is explored as one of 15 key travel trends defining the near-future of travel. It describes how certain paradise destinations are encouraging remote workers to swap working from home for a long-stay working holiday in a new corner of the world.
For example, Vakkaru Maldives’ “Work Well” package rewards those who stay for 21 days or longer with an upgraded villa kitted out with an office, the services of a “Vacay PA” and more. Those taking advantage of the package would also earn significant tier status as part of the Maldives Border Miles scheme.
What’s coming next? Trend reports available to download HERE