Huge numbers of people keeps Dubai air sector on top
Dubai welcomed 8.36 million international overnight visitors in the first six months (H1) of 2019, posting a positive 3% in tourism volume growth compared to the same period last year, according to the latest data released by Dubai’s Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (Dubai Tourism).
The new figures reinforce the continued strength of Dubai’s tourism sector as a key driver of economic diversification and a reliable catalyst for GDP acceleration through 2020.
The largest traffic generators as well as newer high-potential segments have set a strong preparatory pace to fuel Dubai’s climb to becoming the most visited global destination.
His Excellency Helal Saeed Almarri, Director General, Dubai Tourism commented: “Tourism is one of the cornerstones of Dubai’s diversified economic growth, and we measure success based on our ability to aggressively advance towards our goal to be the number one most visited and most preferred city as envisioned by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai.
“The consequent rise in value creation opportunities, and more inclusive sector participation are core priorities, as we equally strive to sustainably grow GDP contribution.
“Our first half results are a particularly encouraging reflection of our progress towards this ambition and underline the effectiveness of our diversified market outreach with holistic ‘awareness to booking’ cycle content amplification and audience delivery, through a deeply networked ecosystem of global partners, industry stakeholders and government enablers.”
India once again led the pack, drawing the highest half year volumes with 997,000 visitors – particularly noteworthy given the severe air traffic and seat capacity challenges due to geopolitical volatilities.
Coming in strong as Dubai’s second largest feeder market once again, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) delivered 755,000 visitors at two per cent year-on-year growth over six months with a notable 4.9% increase over the Eid break alone – signifying continued stability in Dubai’s attractiveness for Saudi families and millennials.
With the GCC as a whole, and KSA (as its lead contributor), being key priorities on Dubai Tourism’s strategic agenda, investments in deepening alliances with the country’s travel ecosystem continued to increase in H1 2019, reflecting the value of such partnerships – particularly via consolidated marketing-promotions-sales programmes.
In addition to the planned calendar of specialised fam trips for KSA’s top travel agents and tour operators, showcasing the latest and most relevant Dubai offering to help them develop tailor-made itineraries for their audiences, Dubai Tourism entered into a long-term association with the Seera Group, one of the region’s leading providers of travel services in the Middle East and North Africa.
Staying firmly within Dubai’s top three traffic drivers, the UK delivered 586,000 travellers beating all odds against a significantly devalued British Pound (vs. US Dollar), amidst growing political and economic turbulences surrounding Brexit.