Tough market conditions including increased land costs and poor exchange rates have impacted on the Maldives with bookings down 35%, according to Hayes and Jarvis.
By contrast, Mauritius has registered an 11% rise so far this year and sales were 60% ahead for the winter over the previous year.
The slump in demand for the Maldives has been even more marked in the major Caribbean islands, with Barbados down 51% and Antigua down 58%.
However, Tobago has seen bookings rise by 16% for the year to date with forward summer bookings looking even better, according to the operator’s long-haul trend report.
Bookings for the Dominican Republic are 14% ahead so far this year, fuelled by the affordability of five-star all inclusive resorts.
Head of commercial Sean Dowd said: “Mauritius may yet prove to be the new Maldives. Strong airfare and hotel offers, high quality all inclusive resorts and the opportunity to twin with Dubai and other cities have all helped to fuel demand.”
The report shows Vietnam as the operator’s fastest growing long-haul destination this year followed by Brazil, Kenya, Tanzania and South Africa.
Dowd said: “While off-the-peg beach packages are still popular – especially four and five-star all inclusive ones – there is no doubting the steady decline in demand for traditional fly-and-flop beach holidays.
“In sharp contrast, our multi-centre trip bookings have doubled over the past two years because growing numbers of people are keen to see more of what a country – or a region of the world – has to offer when they travel further afield.
“Multi-centre trips now account for over a third of our business and this growth trend is one which we expect to accelerate.”
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