An Affordable Ferry Ride from Male Airport to Male City

by Jackie
A white ferry parked at the Airport dock area

You’ve just landed at Male’s Velana International Airport and need to travel to Male (Malé) City on the main Island in the Maldives. 

Taking a taxi is doable, yet what is another easy and affordable transportation option? 

We suggest taking the ferry from the Airport to Male City. We took this route and the reverse route from Male to the Airport. It was very convenient and affordable at 15 Maldivian Rufiyaa ($1.00 USD) per person!

The airport is located on Hulhule Island, across from the Male main island. The ferry takes only 10 minutes to cross the water.

Here are our insider tips on how to get to the Airport to Male Ferry and what to expect. 

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How to Get to the Ferry

After exiting the Male Airport Arrivals Gate, pass the seaplane check-in counters, and follow the signs for “Ferry to Male.”  If you get lost, head to the water and the docks for the speedboats and ferries. 

You’ll see a dark blue sign of “Ferry to Male.” Here is the ticket booth to pay for the ride either in Maldivian Rufiyaa or U.S. dollars. 

The Ferry to Male Ticket Office, located next to the water

This is the ticket office for the Airport to Male City ferry

The cost is 15 Maldivian Rufiyaa (MVR) or $1.00 USD cash. Please have small bills on hand as credit cards are not accepted.

After payment, you’ll receive a paper ticket. Do not throw the ticket away as you’ll need it to board the ferry. 

A hand holding two white tickets for the Airport to Male City ferry

Do not lose these paper tickets!

You may need to wait for the ferry to arrive as the ferry arrives every 15 to 30 minutes.


The Ferry Ride

Once the ferry arrives at the Airport dock, give your ticket to the driver, and board the ferry. 

The Airport to Male Ferry parked on the dock

The ferry waits for passengers to arrive at the airport docking area

Find a seat and wait for the boat to depart. The ferry does not need to be full to depart. 

If boarding the ferry at night, the ferry may not have the lights on. We boarded the ferry after 8:00pm and experienced darkness. While we used our night vision, you could use your cell phone’s flashlight for extra light. 

If you have large luggage, it won’t be a problem. There is plenty of space on the ferry for luggage storage. 

Prefer to travel light? Read our Maldives packing list for a carry on!

The ferry goes at a slow, gentle pace so the chances of getting seasick are low. Enjoy the nice breeze during the ride. 

After 10 minutes, the ferry arrives at Male’s Henveiru Terminal. It’s located on the east side of the island. From the terminal, take a taxi or walk to your accommodation.


Return to the Airport

To take the ferry from Male to the Airport, head to Male’s Henveiru Terminal.

There is a ticket office near the entrance, but it’s not for the Male-Airport ferry. Continue to walk further into the building towards the waiting area, and the ticket office is on the left side. 

The cost is the same as before – 15 MVR or $1.00 per person. You’ll receive a paper ticket to give to the driver before boarding. The drop off at the airport is at the same dock as before. 


Final Thoughts

We highly recommend taking the ferry from the Male Airport to Male City. The 10-minute ride goes by quickly and is very cheap at $1. 

Whether you’re staying overnight or a stopover in Male, enjoy your time. After Male, consider visiting Maafushi or Fulidhoo Island to experience local islands.

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A white ferry for the Male Airport to Male City route with two passengers boarding at the dock

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