Seaplane transfer is one of the attractions of a Maldives resort getaway. Private island resorts situated about more than 80 Kilometers away from Male', the capital city of the Maldives make use of seaplane transfer. Seaplane service is operated by Trans Maldivian Airways who has a Seaplane Terminal in Male', around 3.5 Kilometers away from Velana International Airport.
Tourists to Maldives resorts are greeted and welcomed by resort representatives at Velana International Airport, and will be taken to the Seaplane Terminal in cabs. Some Maldives resorts have private lounge areas at Seaplane terminal which would offer complimentary services to their guests including drinks and meals.
Checking into the Seaplane Terminal will require as much customs as required at an airport. But this time the resort representatives will be around all along helping you with all checking-in procedures. Once you get boarding passes, you will be taken to the seaplane dock where you could see a number of seaplanes anchored near the pier. Normally there would be a wait of a couple minutes before boarding a seaplane.
Seaplane transfer would be a direct flight to the destination resort. Sometimes there would be a couple of stops at other resorts along the way picking up and dropping off tourists. Seaplane flight is manifold more interesting than a domestic flight since you could soak up perfect aerial views of the Maldivian island-scapes. Seaplanes are only the size of a caravan. Getting a window seat will let you enjoy the Maldives in its entirety. Seaplanes would go as high as a normal airplane. But they would rather take a mediocre height, still atop the clouds; but the flight would give you a perfect bird-eye view of the landscapes.
On your return as well, resort representatives will be around with you until the final check-in to the Velana International Airport for your home flight. In most instances, your tour agents will also accompany you at every stage of airport check-in and check-out in order to keep you hassle-free, if you have booked your Maldives tour package from a Maldives tour operator.
On seaplanes, one passenger can have 20 kilograms of checked-in luggage and 5 kilograms of hand carry; for each kilo above the limit an excess of charge of 5 USD will be levied. Extraordinary cases may occur when luggage would be delivered by later flight due to weight restrictions. Normally a seaplane flight would be less than one hour; ideally between 30 to 40 minutes.
Unfavorable weather may cause delay or early schedule of the flight. Also, seaplanes won't operate at night. Hence, late arriving guests would have to stay at the airport for the night until the next seaplane flight to the resort. In such scenarios, you would do better if you have a Maldives tour operator at your service. They would give you proper instructions and aids for your seaplane-missing instances. If you don't have a Maldives tour operator with you, you don't have to worry; the resort representatives would be at the airport giving you proper assistance.