Xiamen Airlines Commences Fujian's First Direct Flight to Maldives Received by Minister of Tourism and Minister of Transport and Civil Aviation of Maldives


At 14:15 Beijing time on February 14, 2024, the fifth day of the first Chinese month, Xiamen Airlines flight MF8017 ferrying 230 passengers landed smoothly at Malé International Airport in the Maldives, indicating the inaugural Xiamen Airlines Fuzhou-Malé flight, and also the first direct flight to the Maldives from Fujian. The airport prepared a water gate, the highest courtesy of civil aviation, to welcome the flight. Ibrahim Faisal, Minister of Tourism of the Maldives, Mohamed Ameen, Minister of Transport and Civil Aviation of the Maldives, and Wang Lixin, Ambassador of China to the Maldives, made a special trip to receive the flight, and organized a unique welcoming ceremony.


During the wonderful traditional Maldivian Bodu Beru Show, Minister Ibrahim Faisal, Minister Mohamed Ameen and Ambassador Wang Lixin presented the passengers with welcome garlands and well-prepared gifts. "Welcome Chinese tourists to the Maldives." In a joint interview with Chinese and foreign journalists, Ibrahim Faisal said the opening of the direct flight would provide Fujian and Maldives passengers with more convenient, efficient and high-quality travel services, and would also intensify the exchanges and cooperation between the two places in various aspects such as culture and tourism.

During the Chinese New Year, Xiamen Airlines carefully arranged the cabin themed around Fujian culture and the Chinese New Year on the inaugural flight, presenting the scenic spots of the two places on both sides of the baggage compartment, along with bilingual creative copy, allowing passengers to recite poems about the mountains and the sea. Xiamen Airlines also carefully planned a lot of exciting parts for passengers including the airborne Chinese New Year gala, folk music performance, prize-giving quiz and customized meals to make passengers feel the strong festive atmosphere and enjoy themselves. "Fujian and Mardai are connected by the Maritime Silk Road." Lin Xiangdong, Director of the Fujian Provincial Department of Culture and Tourism, even acted as the "Recommendation Officer" to invite tourists from the Maldives and all over the world to come to Fujian to start a "blessed journey".



On January 8, 2024, Maldivian President Dr. Mohamed Muizzu visited China, and his first stop was in Fujian. During his visit, the Maldives and China signed 20 cooperation agreements, upgrading the relationship between the two countries to a comprehensive strategic partnership. In response to the important consensus reached by the heads of state of China and the Maldives, and to expand exchanges and cooperation between the Maldives and Fujian in the areas of trade and investment, culture and tourism, Xiamen Airlines realized direct flights between Fujian and the Maldives in only 37 days.

"This direct flight to the Maldives launched by Xiamen Airlines is really awesome." Mr. Li from Fuzhou said that after seeing the flight information, he immediately booked tickets for his family and prepared to go to the Maldives for a different Chinese New Year celebration. The direct flight can greatly shorten their travel time to the Maldives, and also save 20%-30% of the travel costs. In addition, the flight time is excellent, with Fuzhou-Malé flights from 7:00 to 11:00 and Malé-Fuzhou flights from 12:10 to 22:20 (the above times are all local times), and the aircraft range lasts about 7 hours. After arriving at Malé, passengers can be transferred by means of transportation such as seaplanes and speedboats to arrive on the island on the same day without waiting before enjoying an ultimate vacation there.


In addition to the inaugural flight, Xiamen Airlines commenced Fuzhou-Malé direct round-trip charter flight operations on February 18 and February 22, 2024, to build a modern "Air Silk Road" between the two places. During this period, the Fujian Provincial Department of Culture and Tourism would also organize a series of cultural and tourism exchanges in the Maldives such as street flash mobs, cultural and tourism promotions, and travel agent contacts, to show the rich cultural heritage and tourism resources of Fujian to tourists from the Maldives and all over the world.

As early as the 15th century, the ancient Maritime Silk Road closely linked the people of China and the Maldives, and now under the initiative of building the " The Belt and Road ", local exchanges between Fujian and the Maldives are becoming closer, and economic and trade cooperation continues to intensify. The inaugural flight of this direct flight and the implementation of a series of cultural and tourism exchanges will boost deeper cultural exchanges and tourism cooperation between Fujian and the Maldives, strengthen the strategic partnership, achieve the goal of win-win development and consolidate the traditional friendship between China and the Maldives.