Saturday, 16 August 2014

Travel: Maldives with Budget

"I just came back from Maldives for vacation"
"Oh My God! You are so rich. That place must be very expensive!"

That is perception a lot of people every time I told them that I've went to Maldives. Most of people in my country will think that only rich people can go to Maldives as Maldives is one of the luxurious place in the world. Yes, I agree that.. but recently, there are a lot of budget hotels in Maldives. You can get hotel as cheap as USD20. 

I went to Maldives as backpackers with my travel friends. We stayed at Arena Lodge in Maafushi. The room rate is only USD40 per night... very comfortable and clean. There is Wifi and the staffs are very kind and helpful. The location are very near to jetty but if we want to do activities like swimming, snorkeling, BBQ and so on.... we have to walk to Arena Beach at North Maafushi which is quite far from our hotel. So, I would recommend you to stay at activities area to save your time and energy of walking. Ouh, I forgot to tell you that, Maldivian is 100% Muslim. So you only allowed to wear bikini at swimming area. If you look at the map below, the swimming area is located in front of Kaani Beach Hotel. The water are very beautiful.. I swear! so damn beautiful!. 

Most of the activities and restaurant located at North Maafushi

Credit to my friend Siva who took this picture...  This is the view from outside of our Hotel. Please forgive me for forgetting to take picture of our room... (T_T)

Basically, we have spent around MYR3000 to MYR4000 for 6 days in Maldives included flight, hotel, activities and everything as below:

Return Flight --> MYR1130
Hotel for 5 nights --> MYR346.81
Activities, souvenir, transport and food --> MYR1800

We choose to fly with Malaysia Airlines and luckily, we managed to get promo price at MYR1130. So we can save our moneyy.. yeayy!!!
Actually we've spent a lot of money at activities, souvenir and foods... the activities package, foods and souvenir quite expensive in Maldives. I brought MYR1800 and its enough for me for 6 days in Maldives. Just enough! If you want to do more activities, more shopping... please bring extra money. But what else you can shop in Maldives? There is nothing to shop there except souvenir but the souvenirs are very very expensive... I've spent almost MYR500 for souvenir. A very ugly fridge magnet will cost you MYR8 for each. I LOVE MALDIVES T-shirt will cost you MYR40 each... A simple mug will cost you MYR 30.. I bought blouse for my mom for MYR100... fewww!!! *sweating*
 We did snorkeling, 2 times diving, night fishing and picnic. (I will share my activities and more pictures in my next entry)
The transportation not too expensive in Maldives. Ferry only around USD1 or USD2.. Ouh, yaa... Maldives accept USD or you can use local currency in rufiyya. We use both currency. In Male City we use ruffiya but in Maafushi we use USD. Be careful when you use taxi because sometimes they will charge high for tourist. We've been cheated few times... huhuhu

You will see this signboard once you enter Maldives. The prohibited and restricted items under Maldivian Law.