Maldive Surftrips - All you need to know before your trip
My group is keen to go, how does it work ?
The most difficult part is to agree with your mates about the same dates. The earliest, the best ! Check out our surftrips schedule and look for your dates.
1/ Make list of potential guests (availability, budget)
2/ Determine best dates & number of cruising days (can be 10,12 or 14 depending on budget)
3/ Check flight availability with your travel agent (we don't sell international tickets)
4/ Send us your flight schedule and confirm dates & number of days
5/ We send you an official quote
6/ You book with 30%
7/ You send a list of passengers with names, nationality, passport details
8/ We send you a contract
9/ You send complete & signed contract + 70% payment
10/ We welcome you at Malé airport, Maldives international airport.
the usual schedule onboard during the surftrips?
It depends on how good is the surf and so on how much the boat needs to cruise. But it's often like this, everything is optional ! Wakeup 5h30 : coffee. Surf Report ; 06h-8h30 : Dhoni or Dinghy departures - Session Surf 1 ; 08h30-09h30 : Breakfast ; 9h30-13h : Surf Session 2 ; 13h-14h : Lunch+ coffee ; 14h-18h : Surf Session 3 ; 18h : Tea ; 19h30-20h : Dinner. Planning for the next day ; 20h : board games - fishing - DVDs.
What do we do if we don't surf ?
If the surf is not good enough where the boat is anchored, we cruise (30min up to 6h, average is 2h per day) or visiting villages for basic "shopping", or play football and / or volley (16h-18h) or we snorkel and fish.
How many boards do I need ?
Take 2 or 3 boards suited for 3-8ft hollow but not super powerful waves, better bring a fish than a gun, especially in summer season (March-April). Plan to share bards with your friends. Beginner boards and bodyboards can be fine. Longboard is ok but not that convenient for hollow sucky waves and longboard wavehogs can alter wave-sharing. Don't forget your leashes (2 short 6ft and 1 midsize 8ft).
Is there an extra tax for boardbags ?
Usually, no. Emirates, Qatar, Etihad, Sri Lankan and Singapore are surfer friendly airlines but don't exceed 30 kgs for your check-in luggage. Domestic flight are Dash-8 Turboprop which have room for boardbags even 9ft longboard bags but if you hold a big boardbag with 9ft+ longboards, please let us know. No more than 30kg for your boardbag. Free baggage allowance for each passenger (Diver/Surfer) is 25kg, only 1.2usd / kg above : cheap ! . Anything exceeds the above the carrier will charge for the excess baggage as per the given rates below.
What are the most crucial accessories ?
At least 1 tropical wax bar every 3 days ! Water is 27-30°c and base coat wax sticks even better ! De-wax your board before arriving if you have winter wax. Don't forget your long sleeve lycra (+surf hat even better) and your reef booties (not essential but it's better to have and not use them than vice versa).
Is there snorkeling equipment onboard ?
No, bring your own fins, mask and snorkel.
How strong is the sun ?
During summer (March-April), it's sunny almost every day so be prepared with heavy duty sunscreen (SPF 45), skin repair and water sun hat or cap. In winter (May-October), it's often overcast but sun can still be treacherous and skin damage can ruin your trip. Bring a pair of caps and sunglasses.
Is the reef dangerous ?
There is no beachbreak so you always surf on reef. On Indo standards, reef is rather smooth and flat with less wave power so it's much safer. But waves can be really shallow so you really need to know how to handle the reef properly (don't dive head first, always land flat on wipe-outs, avoid stepping on the reef). Most of the injuries are minor reef cuts. Bring Betadine + dry wound dressing (Compeed).
Will I get seasick ?
Most probably not because cruising inside the atolls is mostly calm sea. However, if you're subject to seasickness, bring your own pills. Don't forget to rinse your ears after each session as ear infection do occur on such humid premises. Bring ear plugs in case you need them, ear drops and bring your own soap & shampoo.
Are there mosquitoes and/or Malaria ?
Mosquitoes are rare and getting them onboard almost never happens. Sometimes, there can be a few (very few) in the villages but malaria is non-existent !
Is there fishing equipement onboard ?
There will be a handline or 2 but best is to bring your own fishing rod (short, sturdy, big reel). Thick lines, lures and hooks for potential kingsize fishes 2kg / 40kg.
What should I bring too ?
Take sport shoes (if soccer with locals or reef walks), Films DVD, Books. I-Pod + small speakers, guitar, group games, massage oil. Boat plugs have adaptors (both 110 and 220 V). Bring additionnal food if you're afraid to be hungry despite 5 meals a day : cereals, candy bars, chocolate, dairy products (sometimes available from villages).
Do mobile phones work and can I get e-mail ?
There is 99% coverage in the Central atolls (Time +3h for France, +12h for California) so it's easy to stay tuned with the world. Bring condensation salts for electronic appliances (temperature difference outside / AC). For internet, buy a 3G key with local SIM card at DHIRAAGU or OOREDOO shops in airport, cheap and good enough for emails and quick connections to get surf forecast. You can get WIFI signal at some anchorage spots but you need to buy credit by text message with a local SIM card.
Is there any things prohibited ?
Yes, do NOT bring : alcohol bottles, speargun, pornmags, pork products. Upon arrival, your luggage will be X-rayed, prohibited items will be confiscated. NO DRUG SMUGGLING !!! Immediate conviction and long time jail (no restitution on your way home).
When should I arrive in Malé ?
Ideally a day before the boat trip starts. Most int'l flights from the west (Dubai, Doha; Colombo) arrive in the early morning while Singapore / KL fligts arrive in the late evening.Malé is not that expensive, expect to pay 80 to 120 USD / double room and there is good uncrowded (before 3pm) surf right in town ! Malé is only 15min (1USD) from the airport. You can leave your stuff at the luggage room (5$ for a bag, 10$ for a boardbag). It's a really good move to stop in Malé for a day or 2 so you can rest, surf and be ready 100% for day 1 session 1.
Do I need local money ?
There is a cash-machine right at the airport (1$ = 15 Rufiyaas , 1€ = 16 Rfs , 1000 Rfs is a good catch). Although US cash can be accepted, you need local money if you spend a day in Malé and for local villages shops : cigarettes and candy. For EXTRAS onboard : one big water bottle per day per person is free but all canned drinks are extra (beer is 4-5USD + GST, soft drinks are 2 USD+GST); expect an average of 100 USD (take CASH euros or dollars, small notes please) + 30 USD for the TIP (not compulsory, only if service is good) at the end of the trip ! 2015 GST is 12%. Green tax is 6usd / day / guest.