Velana International Airport celebrating 55th anniversary
The main international gateway to the Maldives, Velana International Airport is celebrating its 55th anniversary.
To mark the occasion a flag hoisting ceremony took place at VIA this morning attended by Tourism Minister Dr. Abdulla Mausoom, Maldives Airports Company Limited CEO Gordon Andrew Stewart along with other staff.
CEO Gordon Andrew Stewart said he is very excited about the upcoming development projects at VIA which include the new CIP terminal and seaplane terminal which is scheduled to be opened within the next 3-4 months along with the new runway scheduled to be opened later in 2021.
CEO Gordon Andrew Stewart further added that with the massive expansion project, VIA is a great place for the locals to build their careers, especially in project management, airplane planning, and for young architects and engineers.
VIA was operating near maximum capacity as 2019 saw the arrival of 1.7 million tourists however, due to the pandemic the borders were closed in early 2020.
There were no international arrivals apart from humanitarian flights, repatriation flights and other COVID19 related flights operated by national airline Maldivian and others international operators.
The borders were reopened on 15th July with Qatar Airways operating the first flight with tourists. International flights were low at first but the airport started to get immensely busy towards the end of 2020 with the beginning of the festive season.
As of April 2021, VIA is handling 24 international scheduled flight operations along with 7 international charter flight operations to the Maldives. The top ten airlines to VIA have operated 3,540 flights carrying over 264,641 passengers just in 2021.
On this special occasion, we wish all employees of Velana International Airport a very happy anniversary.