The Maldives Monetary Authority (MMA) will be conducting its annual survey on spending by Maldivians traveling abroad from December 25 to 31.
The ‘Maldivians Travelling Abroad Survey’ survey will be conducted at the arrival hall of the Ibrahim Nasir International Airport (INIA), the central bank explained in a press release yesterday.
“The survey will mainly gather information about Maldivians spending money abroad for various purposes,” the press release stated.
“Among the information gathered will be the main purpose of the trip, the travel destination, ticket price, cost of food and accommodation, cost of medical treatment, travel expenses, and overall expenses for the whole trip.”
A statistical report would be compiled based on the collected information, it added.
The MMA noted that name, address, and other personal information would not be gathered for the survey and urged cooperation from all Maldivians returning to the country during the survey period.
Last year’s survey – conducted among 65 percent of locals traveling abroad – revealed that Maldivians spent MVR2.9 billion (US$191 million) overseas in 2013.
Maldivians spent US$70 million on medical treatment, US$64 million on holiday expenses, and US$47 million on education, the survey found.
Of the 6,184 respondents, 2,597 people traveled to neighbouring Sri Lanka, followed by 2,473 visitors to India, and 618 visitors to Malaysia.
Of those who traveled to Sri Lanka, holidaymakers spent US$1.7 million while other spent US$2.2 million for medical treatment.
Similarly, Maldivians who traveled to India for medical purposes spent US$2.1 million.
While Maldivians who sought medical treatment in Malaysia spent US$496,872, Maldivian holidaymakers spent US$714,408.
The survey also found that Maldivians spent US$48 million on airfare during 2013.