When you ask most people to describe the Maldives in a few words, they will probably say things like: sun, beach, luxury, exclusive resorts, honeymoon destination, great underwater world, tropical private islands and expensive.
Still nodding your head? Well, lets stop at tropical private island and make that last word inexpensive or budget travel.
We will show you that the Maldives don’t have to be expensive at all, and that you can actually travel on a budget to the Maldives and still have that luxurious experience.
How to fly on a budget to the Maldives
We found some really cheap budget flights from Kuala Lumpur to Male with Air Asia. We travelled in January ( tourist season ) and paid around $200/$250 USD per person for our return flights Kuala Lumpur – Male. This included our luggage ( This goes on top of your flat flight tariff with Air Asia ) With Air Asia you have to pay for your meals on board, you don’t have an inflight entertainment system and a comfy long distance chair, but it`s only for 4.5 hours and as soon as you see the stunning blue sea and the tropical atolls from your plane window you instantly forget about it.
If you fly from the USA, Europe, Australia or other direction, book a flight from your departure city to Kuala Lumpur or Singapore ( and go by bus to Kuala Lumpur ) Stay a few nights in either city, and then fly with Air Asia to Male. This is often so much cheaper then a flight in one ticket straight to Male. From the money you safe with this, you can afford your hotel in Kuala Lumpur or Singapore and tick another destination of your bucket list! Make sure you don’t book the 2 tickets at the same day, as if your first flight is delayed, and you book to tight, you will miss the Air Asia flight, and your insurance won’t cover this, as it isn’t booked in 1 ticket.
How to stay on a budget at the luxurious Maldives Islands
The best travel tip to travel to the Maldives on a budget is to choose the right place to stay and how to get there. You can choose to go with a seaplane or speedboat to an all-inclusive island resorts, stay there for your entire visit and go home with an empty wallet. Okay we have to give you that travelling with a seaplane will be without any doubt an amazing experience, but our goal here is to travel to every country in the world one day, so skip the seaplane and the speedboat and go by local ferry to an island close to the Capital island of Male and the airport, and do day trips from there.
We stayed at the Island of Maafushi and did some amazing day trips from there to experience an exclusive tropical treat on a budget. So for example when you stay at Maafushi Island, and book a resort excursion for a day, you don’t pay for your expensive hotel room where you basically only sleep, but you can use the facilities of a luxury resort for a nice price during your day trip and at the end of the day you go back to Maafushi, where accommodation is much cheaper than the resorts. Read here about the excursions we did from Maafushi Island.
What to do when you arrive in Male
First of all, enjoy the view from the plane as this is absolutely amazing! For a moment you think the plane will land on water, but once you re safe and sound on the ground, the runway does actual looks longer then you might think of the pictures you saw before of Male Airport ( google Male Airport and you know why 😉
Male Airport is located on an island itself, so you have to go with the ferry ( or if you are a bit posh with seaplane or private speedboat ) to Male City. Male is not really big and within one afternoon you can walk around the island to soak up the local life, have some seafood fresh from the ocean and relax.
Because we wanted to check out Male, and the local ferries from Male to the other islands weren’t going anymore after 15.00 we decided to stay for 1 night in Male.
We booked our hotel with Agoda on www.agoda.com The cheapest and in our opinion also the best option was the Marble Hotel in Male where we stayed for 1 night and costs around $65 U.S. per room per night. The rooms where cosy and nice and the people where very friendly and helpful. Breakfast is served at their outside terrace and they will do everything to make you feel at home and happy.
The next day we took the ferry to Maafushi, which is 2 hours from Male. The price of the ferry was only $3 U.S. p.p one way. You have to sit on a wooden garden bench kinda seat, so bring a jacket or towel to sit on for some comfort. On your way to Maafushi you can see a few tropical resorts with those fantastic water bungalows, which really makes you feel you are in paradise.
Read more about Maafushi and click here
For more info about the Maldives in general click here
Did you travel to the Maldives on a budget? Or did you stay in one of the resorts? Do you have any more tips and tricks? Let us know in the comments below