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Updated by Joanna James on Mar 12, 2018
Headline for 5 Travel Tips to Know Before you go on Vacation to Maldives – Better planning, More Fun!
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5 Travel Tips to Know Before you go on Vacation to Maldives – Better planning, More Fun!

Maldives is one of the world's top dream destinations, but, nothing is perfect, and the breathtaking archipelago is not without its faults. Here are 5 tips to help you plan a problem-free vacation!

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1. A Woeful Tale of Extras and Taxes

Budget enough money for extras and taxes, because all extras can be quite expensive and all food, drink, rentals and spas in the Maldives are subject to a 10% service charge and 8% goods and service tax. This is because most, if not all, consumables are in fact imported to Malé and then transferred from there to the resort islands. Usually, resorts include this tax on top of their charges, while some include it in the prices on their public menus or mention it at the bottom of price lists. Keep in mind that because of these taxes, even 3-star and 4-star resort prices sometimes cost the same as or cost higher than those of 5-star resorts.

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2. Does All Inclusive Really Mean All Inclusive?

All-inclusive resorts have fast become all the rage in the Maldives and around the world. Many resorts, agencies and travel portals, like Maldives Resorts Club, offer all-inclusive deals that incorporate everything from accommodation, leisure activities and excursions to drinks and meals, into one price. Keep in mind, however, that most of the time the price offered to you does exclude a few things, which means that you will be spending more than the quoted price. To avoid under-budgeting always ask your travel agent or resort, directly, about what has been included in your bill. For instance, does it include coffee and espressos? Is the minibar included? Are snacks? Can you only dine in the main restaurant or can you try out one of the A-La-Carte restaurants as well? What about cocktails?

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3. Yes, The Reef is All Around, but How Much Will it Cost to Feel it in your Fingers and Toes?

Most islands in the Maldives are governed by one resort – one island, one resort. As such, there are two kinds of resorts, Maldives offers to its visitors: resorts surrounded by big lagoons and resorts surrounded by a reef. When it comes to snorkelling and diving, resorts with a house-reef benefit – all you have to do is get your gear on and jump in the water. In the case of resorts located near lagoons, you'll likely come across two scenarios. The resort will either be located close enough to a reef that you might be able to swim there (be sure to find out how far you'll have to swim though, so you know if you are able), or you'll have to book a snorkelling trip. Some all-inclusive resorts include snorkelling excursions in their prices and prices at other resorts usually differs from island to island. If you don't have your own equipment be aware that some resorts charge about $8 USD + taxes per person, per day for snorkelling.

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4. Location, Location, Location

If peace and tranquillity are first and foremost on your list of preferences for resort villas and rooms, then be sure to find out exactly where your temporary home will be located on the island. Most rooms and villas on resort islands are isolated and undisturbed but, if by chance, the hotel allocates a room close to diving jetties, generators or nearby restaurants and bars, you will have to expect a fair amount of noise. You can ask your travel agent or the resort for a resort map and select which room you would prefer, for a little extra charm, pick the spots that have the best beach or reef, if you can!

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5. So What about this Weather, Eh?

The weather in the Maldives is not cloudless skies and sunshine all year around. This region of the world is subject to unpredictable monsoons, which are in themselves prone to their own inner cycles. So your intended sunny holiday might experience some gloomy weather! The weather changes based on your geographic location as well. There's always fantastic spas, restaurants and bars to indulge in during less than ideal weather, however!

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