Report: UAE travellers’ most popular holiday destinations

Dnata Travel has named the UAE’s favourite spots in 2019 and what 2020 might look like

JA Manafaru, Maldives – The Maldives was named as one of the most popular destinations on the list
JA Manafaru, Maldives – The Maldives was named as one of the most popular destinations on the list

Travel provider Dnata Travel has looked at UAE travellers’ most popular destinations for holidays in 2019.

The most popular destinations for UAE travellers booking via Dnata Travel were the UAE itself, followed by Thailand, Turkey, UK, KSA, Maldives, Italy, Egypt, Switzerland, and Azerbaijan.

According to sister publication Arabian Business, experts from Dnata weighed in on whether these trends would change moving into the new decade.

Dnata Travel UAE, head of product, Emily Williams said: "The UAE remains on top as travellers across the country opt for staycations at the world-class hotels on their doorstep, with beach, island and desert resorts proving most popular. Staycations will undoubtedly remain popular in 2020, culminating in the launch of the highly anticipated The Royal Atlantis Resort.

She continued: "For international travel, Thailand remains a favoured choice, a year-round destination offering city and island life. More travellers are spending time in Koh Samui and we predict this will continue in 2020. Turkey's cultural capital, Istanbul, is ever popular, with the 2020 UEFA Champions League Final in May set to drive more traffic this year.”

"London remains a hotspot in the UK, whilst more traction is being witnessed across Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland to the rugged, epic countryside and vibrant cities.”

She added: "Religious tourism drives travel to Saudi Arabia, with a recent shift towards leisure tourism to its incredible, untouched landscapes only set to continue. The Swiss Alps offer an escape for world-class skiing and luxury alpine resorts, whilst at only a four-hour flight time from the UAE, both the paradise islands of the Maldives, and vibrant Baku, Azerbaijan, offer their own kind of retreat closer to home.”

"Italy is timeless with beautiful architecture, scenery and cuisine, and Egypt, a land of history, will welcome more visitors in 2020 to the opening of the Grand Egyptian Museum."

Williams concluded by making predictions on where UAE travellers may migrate this year, she said:  "Travel to Russia grew extensively in 2019 and we predict this trend will continue in 2020, with cities outside of its largest and most popular, Moscow and St Petersburg.”

"The world's biggest sporting event, the Olympics, will take place in Japan this summer whilst Vietnam will welcome its first edition of the Formula 1 in April – major sporting events sure to drive traffic to these exciting destinations in 2020, as sports travel becomes ever more popular.”
"Finally, more travellers are spending time in the Maldives' fellow Indian Ocean islands, Mauritius, Sri Lanka and the Seychelles."

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