Maldives-based airline Manta Air is set to launch direct flights from India to the Maldives via Bengaluru’s Kempegowda International Airport, starting January.

With India contributing 11 to 14 per cent of total tourism, Ahmed Maumoon, Deputy CEO of Manta Air, emphasises the country’s growth potential.

After a notable surge in Indian travellers post-Covid in 2020, reaching over 290,000 in 2021 and remaining at around 240,000 in 2022, the airline anticipates continued growth, he explained.

To expand operations

Initially, flights will operate three days a week, focusing on the Bengaluru market, with plans to expand to destinations like Cochin International Airport and Thiruvananthapuram Airport.

Flight schedules have been designed to allow guests to maximise their stay duration in the Maldives, with all flights arriving in the Maldives in the mornings and departing late in the evenings for India.

“The announcement marks a pivotal moment in our company’s trajectory—we are progressing from being the leading domestic and seaplane carrier in the Maldives to an international airline operator. This strategic move aims to enhance the guest experience and boost bookings for resorts in Dhaalu atoll. In addition, we foresee a substantial increase in travel demand from Bengaluru and across India in 2024 and beyond,” said Maumoon.  

Recognising India as a crucial market, this initiative represents a milestone for the Maldives-based airline.