Seaplane Services Set to Expand to Thoddoo

Seaplane services are set to expand within the Maldives as Island Aviation Services Ltd (IASL) announces plans to add Thoddoo, Alif Alif Atoll, to its network. Thoddoo will become the second inhabited island to gain a seaplane link.

IASL Managing Director Ibrahim Iyas emphasized the company’s commitment to a thorough assessment process prior to launch. This includes surveying the island, conducting a risk assessment of the coastal area, and evaluating environmental impact, thus ensuring safety and sustainability.

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Iyas further stated that the expansion is in line with the government’s goal of making seaplane services more widely accessible. Discussions with relevant authorities are underway, and the primary aim is to benefit both local residents and guesthouse businesses on Thoddoo.

Thoddoo Council President Ahmed Karam welcomed the development, asserting that increased air connectivity will be a boon to the island’s growth. He noted that seaplanes are particularly attractive to tourists seeking excursions and day trips and that the island’s 60 guesthouses and a daily average of 150 visitors stand to gain significantly.

This expansion follows the initial launch of seaplane services to inhabited islands in December 2023, with Fulhadhoo in Baa Atoll as the first destination. The move signals a strategic shift by the Maldives to decentralize its tourism sector, offering greater accessibility and potential economic benefits to islands beyond the traditional resort model.

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