24.6 million European travellers expected to visit GCC by 2020

Increase in mid-market hotels, pricing, extra flights and comparative fares seem to be the driving factor, according to a report by Colliers International

Dubai, UAE.
Dubai, UAE.

Approximately 24.6 million European travellers are expected to visit the GCC by 2020, according to a report by Colliers International published ahead of Arabian Travel Market 2018. Its scheduled to take place at Dubai World Trade Centre from April 22-25.

Increase in mid-market hotels, pricing, extra flights and comparative fares seem to be the driving factor, according to the report.

The expected increase in travellers is a 17% uptick compared to the figures registered from 2015-2017. The UAE is expected to receive 14.5 million, Saudi Arabia 5.4 million, Oman 2.21 million, Bahrain 1.72 million and Kuwait 738,000, by 2020.

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Commenting on the projected increase, ATM exhibition director Simon Press said: “While European tourists have previously travelled to the GCC for its luxury resorts, the growing numbers of millennial travellers, middle-class tourists and corporate travellers on a budget, are slowly changing traditional market trends, as is the growth in affordable, mid-market hotels combined with an increase in low-cost flights.”

To meet the growing demand, GCC hotel developers, the report added, have turned their attention to quality mid-market properties such as four-star properties Aloft, Centro and Studio M. The growth is expected to continue with a 19.1% compound annual growth rate (CAGR) forecast in four-star development between 2018 and 2020 the report stated.

In terms of flights, Emirates has added a new route to Stansted airport in the UK and flydubai is expanding its Eastern and Central European network to 24 destinations including Belgrade, Bratislava, Bucharest, Prague, Skopje, Sarajevo and Sofia.

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