Newlyweds on their honeymoon are the ONLY guests at a luxury Maldives resort after coronavirus forced airports in the country to shut down.
Newlyweds Olivia, 27, and Raul De Freitas, 28 arrived in the Maldives on March 22 and were only meant to be staying in paradise for six days before heading back to South Africa where they are citizens. However, the highly contagious coronavirus has lead to all airports across the country shutting down which means for further notice, the honeymooners are stuck!
Before embarking on their romantic journey, the couple spoke to their travel agent about whether or not it was okay for them to fly when they were aware of mounting travel restrictions. Yet their travel agent said everything should be fine and all South African citizens should be allowed back home, according to The New York Times.
Yet this wasn’t the case and now the couple is stuck in the Maldives.
Olivia told the Times: “It’s incredible that we get this extra time.
“Everyone says they want to be stuck on a tropical island until you’re actually stuck. It only sounds good because you know you can leave.”
She then added that the couple is receiving a very generous discount on the usually $750 per night resort, but each day they spend there is cutting into their savings.
It wasn’t until the fourth day of the couples’ honeymoon that they received a notice from South African airports stating that they would be closed by midnight on the following day.
They informed the Times that a flight back to South Africa from the Maldives would entail a five-hour flight to Doha, Qatar, where they would then be subjected to a three-hour layover, and then nine hours to Johannesburg.
Due to these complications, it meant the couple could not leave the stunning Maldives resort. It would not have been possible for them to have made it back to South Africa ahead of the country’s airport closure.
The De Freitas said that they had considered all options, including an hour and a half speedboat ride to the main island’s airport. But then the Maldives also made an announcement stating that their lockdown would take place around the same time, meaning all foreign travellers would be banned.
The couple feared that if they tried to leave the resort, they would not be allowed back in.
The De Freitas said that they will have further information on flight permissions by Monday (April 6), despite South Africa’s current lockdown lasting until at least April 16.