Dubai’s appeal just keeps growing

By | Category: Travel news
Jumeirah beach park in Dubai

Jumeirah beach park in Dubai

Dubai is a small part of the Gulf area, not that you would think it given that it punches well above its weight.

Five or ten years ago, the people who would holiday there were the well-to-do who would go there for the warmth, sunshine, shopping and opulence. It built indoor skating rinks, huge shopping malls, hotels and artistically created resorts. Gradually more and more people started visiting for long weekends just like they would New York.

Now there is a new holiday formula. Visitors are booking longer periods for their Dubai breaks. Five day breaks are common. The seven day holiday is becoming more frequent amongst holidaymakers. Why?

The short answer is that Dubai is attracting those tourists that, up to a year ago, would consider seven days at Sharm el Sheikh, Turkey or Tunisia. There has been an 18% growth in winter breaks in the last year or so which, to be fair, is partly due to people in the UK using some of their pension that p until recently they couldn’t access. Even allowing for that, growth has been much higher than the worldwide average of about 4%.

You might think that Dubai would be satisfied but no. By 2020 they are planning for two million visitors a year. There are so many extra seats being made available on airlines flying into Dubai that the visitors will come. The tourist authority has to now persuade them to take a break and stay in Dubai before flying on to their eventual destination. To achieve that they are looking at pitching at a wider market. They are promoting Dubai as a beach holiday destination, a family destination that is safe and has plenty of things to do and as a destination for relaxation. Already, 30% of all those who fly into Dubai International Airport are taking a break before continuing their journey.

Given those extra aircraft seats, all the new hotel building and the marketing skills of the tourist board, I wouldn’t bet that they don’t make their two million visitors that they want. I would, however, bet that they might get them sooner than 2020 judging by the success they are achieving.


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