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Maldives Travel Information

Maldives Travel InformationTo combat the spread of covid-19, the Maldives authorities have declared a state of emergency in the health sector and introduced a nationwide curfew/ lockdown until May 2. Strict entry restrictions have been introduced and all commercial flights, both nationally and internationally, have been temporarily halted. For more information about coronavirus and entry, see the entry Entry and Health.

Safety

Maldives is a popular tourist destination and most trips to Maldives are undertaken without any special problems. Norwegian citizens are encouraged to exercise normal due diligence. travel and stay on the island state.

Crime in the Maldives is low, but theft can occur in hotels and beaches. You should take care of your valuables and other personal belongings, especially when traveling in Mal¨¦. The safe in the hotel should be used. At the request of the police, one may be required to show identification. Travelers are therefore encouraged to carry a copy of the passport and keep the original in a safe place.

Credit card fraud can occur, so be careful when using credit cards, especially in stores and restaurants.

Maldives has severe penalties for drug offenses. Possession of all kinds of drugs, even in small quantities, is strictly prohibited. Drug smuggling and storage can provide up to life in prison.

Import of the following items into the Maldives is prohibited: explosives, weapons, firearms, ammunition, pornographic material, materials considered to be in violation of Islam, including idols, Bibles, pork/pork products and alcohol. The export of turtle shells and corals is also not allowed.

The Maldives authorities take security issues seriously and the fight against terrorism and extremism is high on the political agenda. Returning foreign warriors and increasing radicalization pose a risk of terrorist attacks against tourists in the Maldives.

  • Countryaah: Male is the capital of Maldives. Check to find information of population, geography, history, and economy about the capital city.

The sea around the Maldives can have strong underwater currents and several foreign nationals are drowning every year. It is recommended to be careful when swimming in the sea and to consult with the hotel/travel operator about local conditions.

The Maldives are not particularly vulnerable to natural disasters, but the location of the Maldives and the topography of the atolls make the country vulnerable to tsunamis. The country was last hit by the Indian Ocean tsunami in December 2004.

Norwegian citizens staying for a shorter or longer period in the Maldives are encouraged to register on the Ministry of Foreign Affairs' travel registration pages.

Emergency telephones: Ambulance 102, fire 118, police 119

In case of an emergency in the Maldives please contact the Norwegian Consulate in Mal¨¦ on + 960 3333 000. Address: Dalina Building 5th Floor, 20183 Orchid Magu, Mal¨¦, Maldives.

Outside the opening hours of the consulate or embassy, ​​please contact the UD's 24-hour operational center on tel: +47 23 95 00 00 or by e-mail: [email protected]

Entry

It should be noted that the visa issuance scheme was abolished on 27 March 2020. Diplomatic personnel, official delegations from other countries and international organizations will be exempt from these rules. However, these are requested to provide information on arrival to the Maldivian Foreign Ministry in good time to ensure the necessary approval.

The Foreign Service is not responsible if the following information on entry regulations or visa requirements is changed at short notice. It is the responsibility of the traveler to ensure that travel documents are valid for entry and to familiarize themselves with the current entry rules for each country.

In order to combat the spread of covid-19, Maldivian authorities have imposed strict entry restrictions. Travelers who have been to the following countries are denied entry into the Maldives:

  • China, as of February 4, 2020
  • Iran, as of February 26, 2020
  • Korea (Daegu, Busan, Gyeonbuk and Gyeongnam), March 3, 2020
  • Italy, March 8, 2020
  • Bangladesh, from 10 - 24 March 2020
  • Spain, as of March 15, 2020
  • France, March 15, 2020
  • Germany (Bavaria, North Rhine-Westphalia and Baden-W¨¹rttemberg), as of March 15, 2020
  • Malaysia, March 17, 2020
  • United Kingdom, March 19, 2020
  • Sri Lanka, March 21, 2020

The ban also applies to travelers who have been in transit in or been to one of the countries mentioned in the last 14 days. Authorities have also temporarily suspended cruise ships and other passenger boats from adding quays to the Maldives. Foreigners living in the Maldives who have been in the above countries will enter the country, but will be imposed 14 days with quarantine upon arrival.

The authorities also prohibit travel between resorts and islands, this does not apply to tourists who are on their way to the airport to leave the country.

All Norwegians traveling in the Maldives are encouraged to return home as soon as possible, in a safe and quiet manner, in consultation with their travel or airline. Norwegian citizens living in Maldives should heed the advice and guidance of local authorities. Feel free to contact your insurance company and any Norwegian employer for their advice and recommendations. If you have questions about how covid-19 affects Norwegians on travel, read more on the pages about coronavirus.

When traveling to Maldives, you must have a valid, machine-readable passport and visa. Passport must be valid for more than six months.

If you come to work in the Maldives, a visa must be arranged through the employer before entering.

Updated Maldives entry rules can be found on the Maldives Ministry of Foreign Affairs website.

Maldives import regulations can be found on the Maldives Customs Service website.

Health

Coronavirus (covid-19): A viral disease originating in the Chinese city of Wuhan has been detected in the Maldives. Maldivian authorities declared state of emergency in health sector on March 12, 2020 due to pandemic.

The number of covid-19 infected is rapidly increasing, and the authorities have therefore introduced a 14-day lockdown for the entire country from 17 April. Several islands are under strict observation due to suspected infection. Authorities regularly update the list of islands under observation. More information about covid-19 in the Maldives can be read at Covid-19 local updates.

The government has established three influenza clinics in Mal¨¦ for testing covid-19. These are:

  1. Senahiya military hospital at Moonlight Hingun which is for people showing symptoms of the virus but without a history of travel for the last 14 days to countries with proven outbreak of covid-19.
  2. Sinamale 'Travel Flu Clinic' at Koimala Hingun which is for people who are showing symptoms of the virus and who have a travel history for the last 14 days to countries with proven outbreaks.
  3. Influenza clinic located at a pre-school at Hulhumale near Schwack Cinema which is for foreign nationals and tourists. Visitors do not need to present identification or work permit.

Travelers are encouraged to follow the advice and directions of local authorities.

You can find more information and guidance from the Norwegian health authorities on the website of the Norwegian Institute of Public Health. See also UD's answers to frequently asked questions about travel and coronavirus.

More information about the rules and restrictions related to entry into the Maldives can be found under Entry.

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The public hospitals in Maldives are of varying standards, but several of the private hospitals have consistently good standards, with specialists in most areas and disciplines. There are five major hospitals in Mal¨¦ and Hulhumale, both private and public, in addition to a number of private clinics. Although many of the resorts have a doctor attached to the place, and some of the hotels have their own medical facilities, many of the resorts are several hours away from the hospitals in Mal¨¦.

Travelers are advised to take out travel insurance as private hospital stays can quickly turn up in substantial sums. Otherwise, refer to health stations in Norway for an overview of necessary and recommended vaccines. International vaccination certificate is useful.

Be prepared for tropical hot climate with high humidity. Use sunscreen with high sun factor and drink plenty of water to prevent dehydration.

Measurements: In January 2020, cases of measles were reported in Mal¨¦. The outbreak happened a year and a half after the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the Maldives free of measles.

Dengue fever : There has recently been an increase in the number of dengue fever in the Maldives. The mosquito species that transmits the dengue virus is most often found in inhabited areas, where it lives in stagnant water. It sticks especially during the day. Dengue fever often appears as a powerful flu with a high fever, severe headaches behind the eyes, as well as joints and muscle pain. Nausea, vomiting, coughing and throat pain may also occur. Three to five days later, about half get a red rash that usually starts on the chest and spreads to the arms, legs and face. Not everyone gets symptoms after the infection. If symptoms occur, these usually start four to seven days after the time of infection, but can range from three days up to 14 days.

Common dengue fever is rarely a deadly disease. In a few cases, the disease can develop into a more severe form called demoragic dengue fever (HDF). In HDF, fluid leaks out of the bloodstream, the number of platelets in the blood drops, and the liver function is affected. The result is severe fluid deficiency, circulatory failure and the risk of severe internal bleeding. The risk of HDF is small the first time you get dengue fever, but increases if you later become infected with another type of dengue virus.

There is no vaccine or tablets for the disease. Therefore, take precautions against mosquito bites. Wear long sleeve and trouser legs, use mosquito repellent and sleep with air conditioning on and mosquito nets over the bed.

Zika: The Zika virus is considered endemic in the Maldives, that is, it is believed to be present in the area and may occur as occasional occasional or minor outbreaks. Norwegian health authorities changed the advice of pregnant women and other travelers to areas with zika on 3 May 2017, and pregnant women are advised to postpone unnecessary travel.

Reference is also made to the National Institute of Public Health's official health travel advisory board for trips abroad.

Practical information

You should make sure you take out good travel insurance, or make sure that the one you have is sufficient for your next trip. Good travel insurance will cover, among other things, expenses related to injuries, accidents, illness, home transport and death.

Traveling abroad without travel insurance can have major consequences for you or your family. Should you need hospital treatment and home transport by ambulance from abroad, the costs can be very high.

Always read the insurance terms carefully beforehand, and be aware of the following:

  • Does the insurance cover the country you are going to?
  • Is the insurance valid for the entire duration of the trip?
  • Most travel insurance policies have exemption clauses that include existing illness/chronic illnesses. If you have an illness/chronic illness, you should check with your insurance company before your trip to find out what your insurance covers - and not cover.
  • If you are going to do special activities during your stay abroad, such as extreme sports, you should investigate whether it is necessary to take out additional insurance.

For further information on health care abroad, see the public health portal, www.helsenorge.no.

If you are affected by illness or accident during a temporary stay abroad, you should contact the insurance company (alarm center) or tour operator.

In the Maldives, Muslim law (Sharia) applies. This means, among other things, that it is forbidden to bring alcohol into the country. Alcohol can only be consumed in hotels and tourist islands with their own permission. When visiting mosques, wear clothes that cover most of the body and avoid taking pictures.

The dress code is generally informal, but you should take into account local dress standards when moving outside of the tourist areas. Nudism and topless sunbathing/swimming are not allowed, including in the tourist areas.

Homosexuality is illegal in the Maldives and can lead to penalties. Gays should therefore be aware of this when traveling there, and avoid physical caresses in public places. Physical caresses between men and women in public places are also not accepted.

The time difference to Norway is + four hours (winter time in Norway) and + three hours (summer time in Norway). The current is the same as in Norway; 220 volts.

The area code for calls from Norway to Maldives is +960. It is mobile coverage in most places.

Ordinary credit cards (Visa, Mastercard, American Express, Diners, etc.) are accepted in most places in Male and in the tourist islands. At the tourist places it is usual to pay in US dollars.

Normal opening hours for banks are 0800-1330 and for public offices 0730-1430. Shops are open longer.

National Day is July 26. Otherwise, Muslim holidays are celebrated. Every Friday is a day off, while Sunday is a regular work day.

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