Dubai hotels record 13.2mn overnights
Visa easing and double-digit growth from emerging markets increased figures by 8.2%
Dubai recorded an increase of visitors during 2014, following an easing of its visa policies.
According to recent figures released by Dubai’s Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (Dubai Tourism), the emirate welcomed a total of 13.2 million international overnight visitors last year, marking a 8.2% year-on-year increase.
A number of visa easing policies where introduced by the UAE in 2014, with a key factor being that citizens from 46 countries can now obtain a visa on arrival, this was boosted by the March 2014 addition of 13 EU member states to the existing 15 member states already eligible.
The policies has resulted in a number of significant increases from countries such as Bulgaria, Hungary and Romania, which recorded an increase of visitors of 104%, 86% and 64% respectively.
Commenting on the figures, DTCM director-general His Excellency Helal Saeed Almarri said: “The Dubai Annual Visitor Report provides insights into how and why Dubai achieved significant visitor growth in 2014, continuing the upward trend of recent years. With the year-on-year increase of 8.2% being significantly higher than the global average, the report demonstrates Dubai’s broadening appeal as a tourism destination among multiple geographies and audience segments, highlighting both the success achieved to date and the opportunity for continual growth.
“The 2014 success is especially promising considering pressures on a number of source market economies and the 80-day partial closure of Dubai International Airport (DXB). The results are a tribute to the vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, UAE Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, and the continued resolute partnership between the government and the private sector.”
Other key highlights of the report includes double-digit growth from a number of emerging source markets, such as China, Nigeria and Brazil.