Allied Insurance, in collaboration with the Ministry of Tourism, introduced insurance packages covering COVID-19 related expenses for tourists, for the first time in Maldives.
Launched amid efforts to restart the country's tourism industry, which came to a deadlock during the COVID-19 lockdown, Allied Inbound includes a total of four insurance plan options for tourists with reservations less than or more than seven days.
Allied Insurance will offer between USD 75 and USD 150 per day for people in isolation, between USD 75,000 and USD USD 100,000 for emergency medical treatment as well as USD 2,000 to USD 3,000 for emergency transport to the nearest health facility. An amount of USD 20,000 is set as coverage for internment.
According to guidelines publicized by the Health Protection Agency (HPA), all costs incurred for conducting diagnostic tests and facilitating isolation in the event that a visitor tests positive for the virus must be covered by the individual or the tourist establishment with which the booking was made.
As with numerous countries around the world, in the wake of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, Maldives closed its air and sea borders to tourist arrivals from March 27 to July 15.
The restrictions on international travel left Maldives' heavily tourism reliant economy in an extremely vulnerable state. In mid-April, the World Bank projected that Maldives would be the worst-hit economy in the South Asian region due to the pandemic.
Despite the lifting of restrictions, Maldives has noted a significant reduction in tourist arrivals compared to pre-COVID figures, with only a total of 13,516 tourists arriving in Maldives between July 15 and September 15, as per Maldives Immigration.
However, Minister of Tourism Dr Abdulla Mausoom has stated that the government is expecting an additional 100,000 tourist arrivals before year-end.
Overall, the Maldivian government estimates a shortfall of approximately USD 450 million (MVR 6.9 billion) in foreign currency and a state deficit of MVR 13 billion in 2020 as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic's impact on the tourism industry.