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How expensive is travelling in The Maldives?

Previous to our trip, we didn’t think travelling to The Maldives would be financially possible for us. Turns out, you can easily travel in The Maldives on a budget. Who would’ve guessed? So, how expensive is travelling to The Maldives really? We’ve logged all of our expenses during our 10 day trip to The Maldives. Take a look below to read all about it.


As we said in our budget blog for Sri Lanka, every traveller has different needs for their trip. For The Maldives, one of the main budget breakers is whether you stay in a resort or not. Other big expenses are excursions and drinking alcohol. We also had to pay for Covid-related matters like pre- and post flight Covid-tests. This may be different by the time you are travelling so keep this in mind.
The currency in The Maldives is the Maldivian Rufiyaa (MVR) but many things can be or have to be paid in US Dollars. We have logged all expenses in US Dollars. In total, we spent about $3,436.28 (€ 3,023.93 / £2,542.85) for around 10 days in The Maldives for two people. Read more in the break-down below.

Budget Maldives

Flights (42% of total budget)

$1,433.50 / € 1,261.48 / £1,060.79
As you can see, the flights are a massive part of the budget. We flew in from Sri Lanka and flew out to London (LHR). This meant that is was more expensive than a return CMB-MLE, to and from Sri Lanka but less expensive than a return LHR-MLE, to and from the UK. We would suggest reading our ‘Travelling to The Maldives from Sri Lanka’ blog to find out why we would prefer a return to Sri Lanka. Also, we booked our flight to London quite late which definitely led to an increase of the price. Book at least 1 to 2 months in advance for the best prices. You can read more tips in our blog ‘Everything you need to know about booking flights’.

Accommodation (26% of total budget)

$897.62 / € 789.91 / £664.24
The second biggest expense for us was the accommodation. You could cut this cost a little by going more basic than us with your accommodation. It can also get very expensive if you´d like to include a few nights in a private resort. We spent about an average of $100 a night for a room. On the island of Maafushi, room rates can start as low as $30 per room if booked in advance.

Breakfast (1% of total budget)

We booked all of our accommodation through As we are signed up with we receive Genius discounts, often including free breakfast. That is why in total we only spent $25.00 (€ 22.00 / £18.50) on breakfast.

Lunch & Snacks (4% of total budget)

We spent $147.00 (€ 129.36 / £108.78) on lunch and snacks. Keep in mind that some excursions include lunch. This means that the lunch costs will be included in the excursion costs. We also loved a late night snack or an ice cream to cool us off during the day.

Dinner (5% of total budget)

For dinner we did not spend as much as we thought we would. In total we spent $172.00 (€ 151.36 / £127.28). Beforehand we read that dinner is at least $40 to $50 dollars per person. This was definitely not the case for us, our most expensive dinner was $33 in total. It is of course massively dependent on where you dine.

Drinks (1% of total budget)

So here’s the catch; drinking alcohol is prohibited by law in The Maldives. It’s no secret that we love a drink and so this expense is way lower than it would be if we could have a wine with dinner or a cold beer by the pool. There are two options to consume alcohol in the Maldives. The first is to book a day pass to an all inclusive private resort. This will cost $100+ per person. The second option is to go to a floating bar. This is a bar on a cruise ship where you can get your alcoholic drinks. Honestly we heard that it’s a lot of hassle to go here for a very expensive drink. We did not visit any of these and only spent $30.00 (€ 26.40 / £22.20) on drinks in total.

Tom in Indulge Maldives

Transport (6% of total budget)

$195.50 (€ 172.04 / £144.67)

Transport in The Maldives is different than in other countries. There is not much to choose from but there are some options. First and most expensive is the sea plane. You only use the sea plane if you go to a private resort which requires the plane and this must be arranged beforehand. This could be included in your resort price and if optional could cost hundreds of dollars. The second option is by private or shared speedboat. The private option, you can also arrange via your hotel and the price will be totally up to how far away your island is. The shared speedboat can be arranged at the airport or via your hotel. A shared speedboat to Maafushi or Thulusdhoo from Malé airport will cost you around $20-$30.


The third option is travelling by public ferry. To travel by ferry you will have to take a boat to Malé island ($1/$2), walk to the ferry point and take the ferry to Maafushi ($2/$3). In total we spent $195,50 (€ 172.04 / £144.67) on transport. This includes some small taxi rides to the dream beach in Thulusdhoo. We say taxi ride, it was on the back of a pickup truck! Most islands are small enough to explore by foot, so no extra expenses there!

Excursions (8% of total budget)

$290.00 (€ 255.20 / £214.60)
In our opinion excursions in The Maldives are completely necessary. Besides exploring the small island and relaxing on the beach, there’s really not much to do! Our spendings of $270 does not really reflect the budget we would suggest. Our plan was to do a tour/ excursion every other day. In Maafushi this was very achievable as the excursions are very well priced. The snorkelling trips in Thulusdhoo on the other hand, were much more expensive. This is why we opted for renting some snorkelling gear instead and went out exploring on our own in Thulusdhoo. We still saw lots of fish, baby sharks, a turtle and a manta ray!!!

Turtle in The Maldives

With a cost of only $10 for the day for the two of us, it was definitely worth it! For the snorkelling excursions from Maafushi, expect to pay around $75USD for a full day tour and anywhere from $25/$40 for a half day tour. Other islands will charge way more! You can also book water sport activities like jet-skiing, tubing, parasailing, stand-up paddle boarding and canoeing. We would suggest booking your tours from Maafushi island and if you do go to Thulusdhoo, use your time here to explore the under water world on your own or catch some waves if you’re visiting in surfing season! As we didn’t do many tours and activities, we would suggest you budget in some more money for this section.

Sharks in Maldives

Extra’s (1% of total budget)

$43.00 (€ 37.84 / £31.82)
This section is for souvenirs and things like your laundry. We only bought some souvenirs to remember The Maldives by for ourselves. We already bought loads for our friends and family in Sri Lanka so didn’t have to include that in this budget.

Covid-related expenses (6% of total budget)

$202.66 (€ 178.34 / £149.97)
We visited The Maldives in January 2022. During this time we had to show a pre departure PCR test and we had to book a Lateral Flow test on day 2 of arriving back in the UK. Our pre departure PCR’s in Sri Lanka cost around $65. Our pre departure PCR’s in The Maldives cost $120 dollar total and our lateral flows in the UK costs us around $18.50. Theses costs are dependant on where you arrange your test, what test is required and if it is even required to do a test.

If you are already planning your Maldives trip, you can find some tips for the island of Maafushi HERE. Also, we have included some money saving tips in our Sri Lanka budget blog. If you’re interested you can read that HERE. Furthermore, if you are already in Sri Lanka and you want to visit The Maldives from there, you can read our tips HERE.

Travelling Translated

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Travelling Translated

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