How I afforded my trip to the Maldives

Out of all the places I’ve visited, it’s the Maldives I get asked about most. Where I stayed, where I flew to and who I flew with are common questions (read all about those here), but the one I hear the most is: ‘How did you afford it?’. A lot of that is down to some serious saving- yeh, I eat tinned fish everyday (not just tuna, might I add), don’t judge- but there are a few other things to consider, too…

 


1. Stick to standard room types

The entrance to our beach villa

While I’d happily cut off my right arm to stay in an overwater villa, the standard rooms in most Maldives resorts are just as luxurious. Each island is set on a beach, so whichever room you choose, it’ll be right on the sand and right in front of the ocean which, when you think about it, is what you’d pay more for on an average beach holiday. If the opportunity to stay in an overwater villa excites you as much as it does me though, you might want to think about splashing out on one for one or two nights of your stay as opposed to the whole duration. If I ever get the chance to go back, I’d definitely consider it.

 


 

The spa at Velassaru Maldives

2. Don’t dismiss flight layovers

You can fly direct from London to Male in 10 hours with British Airways (they’ve also got a sale on here until 26th September with flights from £30 right now!), but a stopover elsewhere can save you up to £200. We flew with Qatar Airways with a stopover in, you guessed it, Qatar. This saved us £180 and only added 2 hours onto our journey.

 


 

3. Book with Destination2

Nope, I’d never heard of it before either, but the Maldives prices on Destination2 were considerably cheaper (up to £150 per resort) to those provided by more well-known travel agencies. It’s a luxury travel operator and all bookings are ATOL protected. I never had any problems and they were always quick to respond via both phone and email when I had a question. Bearing in mind this is the most expensive trip I’ve ever paid for, I was apprehensive to use a travel agent I’d never come across, but I found multiple forums confirming it was legit- and this post is one for you to reference.

Velassaru Maldives

 


4. Book ahead

As far ahead as humanly possible. Advance booking hotel deals are all well and good on your average holiday but with Maldives prices being a lot higher, discounts are more significant. Think about it; 30% off a holiday that costs £1000 isn’t as substantial as it would be on one that costs £3000. I’ve posted more about booking ahead here, but we’re talking at least 6 months.

Velassaru Maldives

 


 

5. Keep on top of flash sales

Subscribe to emails from as many luxury travel providers you as you can think of: Destination2, British Airways (as mentioned above, there’s a British Airways sale on right now- click here), Virgin Holidays, Kenwood Travel (I used Kenwood when I visited Bali), Kuoni, Scott Dunn– all of them. Every travel agent puts on a flash sale at least once a year, and it can be the difference between a £4000 holiday, and a £2000 holiday. I booked my trip to the Maldives on Black Friday, and it saved us around £1800. Trust me, all the irrelevant emails you might get will be totally worth it. Put this one in your diary: Black Friday, 24th November.

Velassaru Maldives

 


 

6. Be savvy with your choice of hotel board

Do you really need all inclusive? Are you actually going to wake up in time for breakfast? Or maybe you’d much rather not worry about the bill at the end of the trip? These are all things to think about before you select your board. We opted for the bed and breakfast option at Velassaru Maldives, and it was more than enough. Breakfast is usually a buffet, so you can eat as much as you want- note the use of want, not need- I practically rolled home. Our bill at the end of the trip came to around $1000 (you pay in dollars), or £750 less than what we would have paid if we’d gone all inclusive. Saying that, the Maldives is the type of place where you want to forget about everything- a place where you can totally relax, so you might not want the worry of a bill come checkout. Handily though, most Maldives resorts provide you with a TV in each room that allows you to check your bill as you go along.

Velassaru Maldives

 


 

Hope that helps- I can concur that the cost is most definitely 1000% worth it. You can see Destination2’s current price list according to month at Velassaru Maldives (where I stayed) by clicking here. Let me know if there’s anything else you’d like to know!

BW x

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12 Comments

  1. Sofia Zervou-Sørensen
    20/09/2017 / 5:00 pm

    Hey Bridie!
    I love your posts on your blog and I hope you would give me some advise on saving money. I finished high school and now I’m taking a gap year to travel. I want to save money to visit Greece and Lebanon. What is your best advice to save money?

    I hope to heat from you soon.

  2. 07/10/2017 / 1:04 pm

    I was over in the Maldives recently and found that staying in a B&B at an island inhabited by locals, rather than one of the resorts, was a way of keeping costs down.

    • 07/10/2017 / 1:56 pm

      Hi Stuart, that’s such a good idea! Had never even thought of it but it’s a really, really useful tip! Thank you!

  3. Kristin
    28/10/2017 / 5:50 pm

    It looks beautiful. I’d love to visit

    • 30/10/2017 / 10:59 am

      It really is! You should go if you ever have the chance! x

  4. 28/10/2017 / 6:41 pm

    Hi lovely great post! Some awesome tips!! Im an Aussie and live in Maldives part time each year. Also worth checking out some luxury guesthouses + local islands to stretch the budget further!! Great pics you have! Let me know if you’d like to contribute to my online Maldives travel influencer magazine http://www.indulgemaldives.com

    • 30/10/2017 / 11:01 am

      Hi! Wow that’s amazing- I’m so jealous you get to live there part time! And that’s a great tip. I’ll send you an email now 🙂

  5. 28/10/2017 / 8:27 pm

    Hey Bridie,

    This is so true! A friend of mine recently went to the Maldives because it was actually *cheaper* for her to go there than to Vietnam! How crazy is that? It really opened my eyes to how we’re all told that the Maldives is expensive and just for honeymooners, but it’s a myth! Thanks for sharing.

    • 30/10/2017 / 11:02 am

      Hi Amy. That’s amazing! It’s so true though- everyone thinks it’s out of their budget, but that’s not necessarily true. Thanks so much for reading 🙂

  6. 29/10/2017 / 5:48 pm

    Some great tips in here, thank you! Our first time round in Maldives we bagged the best overwater villa at Taj Exotica at half price just because they had some renovation work (which we have not heard or felt) – it was one of our most iconic holiday and redefined our definition of luxury and customer services – booked through Kuoni – impeccable experience all around. We are now heading to Maldives with the kiddies in December – slightly different considerations, kids clubs included 😉

    • 30/10/2017 / 11:02 am

      Hiya! Wow this sounds amazing, and even better that you’re going back! I can’t wait to return! Have the BEST time and thanks for reading! x

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