Maldives set to become the first country to launch its own loyalty program

Sep 29, 2020

This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

Air miles, hotel points and now Border Miles.

In December, the Maldives will launch its own loyalty program — a first for a country. On Sunday, during a virtual ceremony hosted by the Maldives’ Minister of Tourism, the country unveiled its idea for a three-tiered loyalty program, known as Maldives Border Miles.

Sign up to receive the daily TPG newsletter for more travel news!

Up to this point, there is limited information about how status will be earned and what rewards each level will entail. What we do know is that there will be three levels:

  • Aida (bronze);
  • Antara (silver); and
  • Abaarana (gold).

A tourist’s number of visits and duration of stay will help to earn status, with extra points for those visiting the islands for special occasions. The program is set to launch on Dec. 1.

It’s unclear what the levels of status will get a traveler when they visit the bucket-list destination. Given a trip to the Maldives can often be associated with spending a lot of money, we’re hoping that the benefits of each status tier will offer some kind of monetary benefit.

Related: 6 reasons to pick the W Maldives over the St. Regis

When you consider, for example, that a seaplane transfer in the Maldives often costs upwards of $600 per person, that can truly add up. If there is some savings potential on this required expenditure, it could lure tourists to come back to the island time and time again.

Alternatively, if the tiers offer experience perks, such as priority entry lanes at immigration, it could be an incentive for would-be travelers tight on time or not looking to wait in long queues.

Ultimately, whether or not the Maldives Border Miles program will be a success will largely depend on how it can attract consumers. Will its perks be enough to entice visitors to come back time and time again? Or, will they be lacklustre enough for someone to choose another island destination for their holiday?

We will have to wait and see.

The Maldives reopened to tourism in July with few requirements. However, as of earlier this month, it’s revised its entry requirements to implement mandatory testing. Visitors must have a negative COVID-19 test result, taken no more than 72 hours prior to departure in order to enter the country.

Featured image by @ashleybielawska via Twenty20

Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card

Earn 90,000 bonus miles and 10,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new card in the first three months of card membership. Offer ends 11/10/2021.

With Status Boost™, earn 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, up to two times per year getting you closer to Medallion Status. Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels, 2X Miles at restaurants and at U.S. supermarkets and earn 1X Mile on all other eligible purchases. Terms Apply.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Limited Time Offer: Earn 90,000 Bonus Miles and 10,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months. Offer expires 11/10/2021.
  • Earn up to 20,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) with Status Boost® per year. After you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, you can earn 10,000 MQMs two times per year, getting you closer to Medallion® Status. MQMs are used to determine Medallion® Status and are different than miles you earn toward flights.
  • Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels.
  • Earn 2X Miles at restaurants worldwide, including takeout and delivery and at U.S. supermarkets.
  • Earn 1X Miles on all other eligible purchases.
  • Receive a Domestic Main Cabin round-trip companion certificate each year upon renewal of your Card. *Payment of the government imposed taxes and fees of no more than $75 for roundtrip domestic flights (for itineraries with up to four flight segments) is required. Baggage charges and other restrictions apply. See terms and conditions for details.
  • Enjoy your first checked bag free on Delta flights.
  • Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓®.
  • Enjoy an exclusive rate of $39 per person per visit to enter the Delta Sky Club® for you and up to two guests when traveling on a Delta flight.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees.
  • $250 Annual Fee.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees
Regular APR
15.74%-24.74% Variable
Annual Fee
Balance Transfer Fee
Recommended Credit
Terms and restrictions apply. See rates & fees.

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.