Frequently Asked Questions

What taxes and service charges do I pay?

Tax on villas at Soneva Jani stands at 25.44%. This is based on your room rate, and includes a 10% Service Charge, 2% Carbon Offset Tax, and 16% Goods and Services Tax. There is an additional USD 6 per person per night Green Tax for food and beverages, transfers and other resort facilities, such as the spa.

Where is Soneva Jani located?

Soneva Jani is located in the Medhufaru lagoon in the Maldives’ Noonu Atoll. This small private archipelago includes the 150-acre Medhufaru Island and five islets, four of which remain untouched.

What is Soneva Jani time?

At Soneva Jani, we set our clocks forward by one hour ahead of Malé time so that our guests can enjoy more daylight hours. Malé time is UTC +5. During Ramadan, the clocks at Soneva Jani shift back to Malé time.

What is the weather like?

The Maldives’ tropical climate is influenced by monsoons – the average temperature is a balmy 30°C (86°F), and the coolest days are a pleasant 25°C (77°F). Sea temperatures are around 22 to 28°C (72 to 82°F).

In the dry season (November-April), expect clear blue skies, light sea breezes and tropical sunshine. In monsoon season (May-October), the weather can be more mixed, with sunshine, showers and occasional storms.

When is the best time to visit?

The Maldives is an all-season destination, with a tropical climate, sunshine-filled days and temperatures averaging 30°C all year round. Diving is good at any time of the year, however the monsoon season (May-October) is the best season for manta rays and other marine life due to the higher quantities of plankton.

Will I need any vaccinations?

Vaccinations are only required for visitors travelling to the Maldives from a region where yellow fever and cholera are endemic. For all other guests, no vaccinations are needed.

Is there a doctor on site?

We have a resort nurse available 24/7 at Soneva Jani. Our clinic is well equipped, with emergency equipment including a cardiac machine and defibrillators. The Manadhoo Atoll Hospital is a 10-minute speedboat ride away, and more serious situations might require an airlift to Malé.

What Maldives airport should I fly to?

You can fly directly into Maafaru International Airport in the Noonu Atoll, which operates 24/7. It handles scheduled domestic and international flights and private charters. Located on Maafaru Island, it is just 7 ¾ nautical miles from Soneva Jani, which can be reached with a short speedboat ride. For more information, click here.

You can also fly into Velana International Airport in Malé.

How do I get to Soneva Jani from Malé?

There are two main ways to arrive at Soneva Jani: either by seaplane from Velana International Airport in Malé, or by flying direct to Maafaru International Airport in the Noonu Atoll, which operates 24/7 and handles domestic and international flights and private charters.

When travelling through Velana International Airport, the Soneva experience begins from the moment you arrive. You will be greeted by a Soneva Representative holding a sign saying “Soneva” who will assist you with your local transfers.* To reach Soneva Jani from Malé, you can take a 45-minute private seaplane from Malé International Airport direct to the resort.

There are two seaplane choices available: either the Soneva seaplane or the Manta Air seaplane. The Soneva seaplane is private and more comfortable, while the Manta Air seaplane carries slightly more passengers and may stop en-route at other destinations before arriving at Soneva Jani. Please be aware that the Soneva seaplane is operated by Manta Air, so we are bound by their timings and regulations.

When arriving at Maafaru International Airport, your personal Barefoot Guardian will meet and greet you from your flight, assisting with immigration and customs to ensure that your journey is as fast and seamless as possible. We provide a complimentary private speedboat service between Maafaru Airport and Soneva Jani, with a transfer time of just 15 minutes.

All guests who have pre-booked and paid for the Soneva Seaplane, but instead transfer from or to Malé on the TMA seaplane, will receive a resort credit as compensation, valued at USD 150 NET per person per voyage during peak season, and USD 100 NET per person per voyage during shoulder season. The resort credit can be redeemed against food and beverages, experiences and Soneva Soul treatments, excluding third parties and retail outlets.

What happens when I arrive at Velana International Airport?

Upon exiting the doors after luggage collection, you will be met by Soneva’s Airport Representative holding a sign with ‘Soneva’. They will escort you to either the lounge or the seaplane/domestic terminal for departure.

Are there CIP services at Velana International Airport?

We offer complimentary CIP services to all guests spending a minimum of USD 12,500 per person, per stay on their room at Soneva Fushi or Soneva Jani (room rate only, other services not included). Accompanying children will also receive complimentary CIP services.

Can I leave luggage in the Soneva Lounge?

There are no storage facilities at the Soneva Lounge, however there are secure locker facilities at the International Airport. Lockers can be rented for less than USD 10 per day. This can be arranged upon arrival at the airport. Please ask Soneva’s airport representative for assistance.

Why does the seaplane only fly during the day?

As seaplanes land on and take off from water, they will only fly from sunrise to sunset.

When arriving into the Maldives, please plan to arrive at Malé by 15H30 local time if you would like to reach Soneva Jani by seaplane on the same day. If you are unable to arrive by that time, you can spend the night in Malé. It is also possible to take a domestic flight to our sister resort Soneva Fushi, stay there overnight and transfer across to Soneva Jani by speedboat the next morning (a 60-minute approx. speedboat ride).

For guests departing from Soneva Jani, seaplane flights can be arranged for international flights scheduled for a departure time between the hours of 09H00 until approximately 16H00.

At what altitude does the seaplane fly?

The seaplane flies at an altitude between 2,100 to 6,500 feet. This varies with different payloads and the number of people on each flight.

What happens if I arrive in Malé late at night?

If you arrive outside of the seaplane’s flight schedule, you can arrange an overnight stay at either the Hulhule Island Hotel at the airport or Hotel Jen Malé. The first seaplane of the following day will depart for Soneva Jani at 09H00. Our airport representative will meet you upon your arrival and assist you with any transfers.

For late arrivals, it is also possible to stay overnight at Soneva Fushi, our sister resort. The last domestic flight from Malé to Dharavandhoo Airport (which is the local airport island near Soneva Fushi) is at 23H15.

What is the baggage allowance on the seaplane?

The standard weight is 25 kg per person, including hand luggage. If you have more luggage, please let our Reservations Team know in advance. There is no baggage allowance for infants under two on the seaplane.

Do infants require their own seat?

Transfers for infants below the age of two are free of charge. Due to legal safety requirements, there is no separate seat allocation for infants under two on the seaplane.
Can I charter a private seaplane?

Yes, we offer a private seaplane charter. The cost of a private charter on Soneva Seaplane (9 seats) is USD 9,000 per one way trip, which includes a CIP service.

Manta Air also offers a VIP private charter at USD 8,000 per one way trip (for 8 or 10 seats depending on the plane selected). This does not include CIP services. Manta Air also offers a regular 14 seat charter, including CIP services, at USD 6,500 per one way trip. All prices include taxes.

Can I arrange a speedboat transfer direct from Malé to Soneva Jani?

We advise against speedboat transfers from Malé – the journey takes approximately 3.5-4 hours by sea, and can be rough.

If you are travelling from our sister resort, Soneva Fushi, we offer a complimentary speedboat transfer which takes approximately 60 minutes.

How do I get to Soneva Jani from Soneva Fushi?

We offer complimentary transfers by speedboat between Soneva Fushi and Soneva Jani. The journey takes approximately 60 minutes. At an additional charge, you can sail between the two resorts on our private yacht, Soneva in Aqua, which takes around four to five hours. We recommend that this is booked as part of a two-day/one-night excursion. For more information, please contact our Reservations Team.

What happens on departure from Soneva Jani?

The exact timing for your departure will be communicated to you by your Barefoot Butler on the evening of departure. Your luggage will be collected and you will be presented with your final bill for signing approximately one hour before you depart. Our transfer team will ensures that all guests reach Malé International Airport on time for their connecting flights.

What should I pack?

At Soneva, we believe in travelling light. Don’t get weighed down with non-essentials by following our useful packing guide:

1. Leave your heels at home – our ‘no news, no shoes’ policy not only lets you feel the sand between your toes, but also means your suitcases will be considerably lighter.

2. Keep it casual. Take your cue from our laid-back vibe and dress accordingly.

3. Don’t bother with heavy clothes – our enviable climate is temperate all year round, so the most you’ll need is a light wrap or shawl. And if it does rain, simply borrow one of our rain coats or umbrellas.

4. There’s no need to bring bottles of mosquito repellent with your toiletries – we have both mosquito coils and lotion in all of our villas.

5. Want to while away an hour or two with a great book? Visit our well-stocked pop-up bookshop from our Barefoot Bookseller and choose your favourite tome. Most of our villas also feature their own bookshelves, too.

6. Our goal is to completely eliminate the use of plastic at our properties. Please don’t bring any plastics with you (such as water bottles) – we provide our own filtered water in eco-friendly reusable glass bottles. If you must bring plastic, we politely request that you also take it home with you.

7. Please also avoid having your luggage wrapped in cellophane at your departure airport. Single-use plastics such as luggage wrap have a devastating effect on the natural environment, and we are currently campaigning to end their use in the Maldives.

8. We have professional photographers and videographers at all our resorts to help you capture that perfect moment, so you can leave heavy camera equipment at home. Please contact us at reservations@soneva.com for further details and prices.

9. For families with infants and small children, we will arrange all the essential equipment you need, such as cots and high chairs. Please refer to our pre-arrival form for more details, or contact us at reservations@soneva.com.

10. If you’re travelling with children, don’t pack all of their toys and gadgets – younger guests will love The Den, our dedicated zone for kids of all ages, which includes a Lego room, dressing up room, cinema, music room, arts and crafts space and even a kitchen for kid-friendly cooking classes.

11. Need a charge? We provide adaptors in all of our villas and our electricity sockets are multi-standard to fit a wide range of plugs and chargers.

12. If you need to stay connected to the outside world, we offer complimentary WIFI at the resort. Should you wish to truly disconnect you can turn the WIFI off in your villa.

13. To chill out to your favourite soundtrack, simply connect to the Bluetooth Bose speaker system in your villa. Each villa also includes a television and DVD player.

14. Planning to stay active during your visit? We have everything you need, from yoga mats in every villa, personal bicycles and tricycles for guests of all ages, and complimentary use of non-motorised watersports equipment, including paddle boards, canoes, catamarans and windsurfs. We also have an on-site gym.

15. Tell us your favourite vintage, and we’ll stock up your walk-in mini bar or cellar before you arrive.

16. Forgotten something? Our on-site boutique has all the essentials, from natural suncreams to the latest beachwear.

Can I bring a surfboard with me?

Yes, you can. However, your board may not travel on the seaplane or domestic flight transfer, depending on the weight of the luggage. We have a wide range of eco-friendly, complimentary surf boards and other water sports equipment that are available for you to borrow, so we encourage you to leave your surfing equipment at home.

Can I bring/use my own drone?

We strongly advise against bringing drones to Soneva Jani. Maintaining our guests’ privacy is our top priority, so drone use is completely banned in many areas of the resort (such as above guest villas). There are specific times and areas when drone use is permitted, which must be approved by our Guardian of Experience. If you would like to record drone footage, we recommend that you use our Digital Storyteller service.

What can I do at Soneva Jani?

For our full list of experiences click here. To see our full Soneva Stars calendar of visiting chefs and experts, click here.

What activities are there for families?

The Den, our children’s zone, is a playground for the imagination. Click here for more information about The Den and its weekly programme of activities.

We also offer a wide range of one-of-a-kind experiences for the whole family.

Do you offer photography or videography services?

Yes, our Digital Storytellers can accompany you however you wish, capturing whatever memories you choose. They also offer drone photography and videography.

If you wish to book one of our Digital Storytellers, please coordinate with your Barefoot Guardian to book a time slot, or contact our Reservations Team.

What equipment is available in the gym?

Our all gym equipment is from Technogym and includes:

  • Kinesis
  • Treadmills
  • Cross Trainer
  • Skill Bike
  • Skill Row
  • Multi Gym PLURIMA
  • Multi power weight rack
  • Dumbbell sets

Do you provide bicycles and helmets?

Yes, we provide complimentary bicycles and tricycles in every villa. Helmets are available on request.

Where can I eat at Soneva Jani?

For our full list of dining destinations and experiences, please click here.

Do you cater to plant-based, vegans, vegetarians, coeliacs or people with special dietary requirements?

Yes, we have a wide range of menus to suit every dining requirement and our chefs can customise every meal according to your preferences (including vegetarian, plant-based, pescatarian, kosher and halal).

Do I need to book ahead for Soneva Jani’s restaurants?

Tables at our restaurants are based on availability (excluding So Fresh for our Half and Full Board guests). You can book in advance via Reservations, or you can speak to your Barefoot Guardian if you want to book a specific restaurant during your stay.

Which restaurants are included in the Half and Full Board meal plans?

Half Board (breakfast and dinner) or Full Board (breakfast, lunch and dinner) meals are fully-inclusive at Down to Earth and So Cold for breakfast and at Down to Earth, Overseas by Mathias Dahlgren, So Wild and Director’s Cut for lunch and dinner. If you choose to dine at any of our other outlets, you will be credited with USD 100 per person for lunch, and USD 175 for dinner. Anything outside of this credit limit will be charged as a supplement as per the published rates.

Are beverages included in the Half or Full Board meal plans?

No. All beverages, including juice, water and aerated and alcoholic drinks are charged separately.

Do you have an all-inclusive supplement?

Yes, Soneva Unlimited is priced at USD 920 per adult per night (age 15 and above) and USD 460 per child per night (age 7 to 14), inclusive of taxes and service charge. The supplement is charged in addition to nightly villa rates and is not applicable for any bonus night offers. Soneva Unlimited includes endless sumptuous feasts and inspiring cuisine with visiting Michelin-starred chefs; daily rejuvenating therapies and one-of-a-kind experiences.

Can we prepare our own food in the villa kitchens?

This can be arranged on request. Please note that not all villas have kitchens so please confirm with our Reservations Team in advance.

Can I dine at Soneva Jani if I’m not a guest?

Yes, if you make a reservation in advance through our Reservations team at reservations@soneva.com. Transfers to and from Soneva Jani can be arranged privately or through Soneva Jani by prior arrangement.