Dubai registers 20 pc growth in H1 2023 tourist arrivals

Hotel occupancy of 78 pc surpasses 2019 levels
/ New Delhi
Dubai registers 20 pc growth in H1 2023 tourist arrivals

The arrivals in H1, 2023 reflect a 20 pc growth in the arrivals recorded in same period of last year, says DET

With over 8.55 million tourist arrivals in the first six months of the current year, Dubai registers 20 pc growth vis a vis the same period last year. Hotel occupancy, at 78 pc, is not only amongst the highest in the world currently, but also 2.2 pc higher than the same period in 2019.
Rate this post

Latest data released by Dubai’s Department of Economy and Tourism shows that Dubai received 8.55 million international visitors from January to June 2023, exceeding the pre-pandemic figure of 8.36 million tourists in H1 2019.

A press statement by Dubai DET says that numbers represent the best-ever performance by the emirate and has surpassed pre-pandemic visitation levels and further bolstered the city’s bid to become the world’s most visited destination.

The arrivals in H1, 2023 reflect a 20 pc growth in the arrivals recorded in same period of last year, says DET, adding that contributes to the goal of the Dubai Economic Agenda 2033, launched by Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, to consolidate the emirate’s status as one of the world’s top three cities.

The statement adds that the record H1 performance reflects the successful and diverse city-wide drive to market the destination, with the unwavering support of stakeholders and partners, and under the guidance of Dubai’s visionary leadership. It also reaffirms Dubai’s position as the fastest recovering destination globally, and far exceeds the projection made by the United Nations World Trade Organisation that international tourist arrivals could reach between 80-95 pc of pre-pandemic levels this year.

Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum

“The remarkable surge in international visitors witnessed by Dubai in the first half of 2023 further demonstrates its emergence as one of the brightest spots not only in the worldwide tourism sector but also the broader global economic landscape. This accomplishment has been made possible by the foresight of Dubai’s leadership, whose vision and prudent polices fortified its resilience in the wake of global challenges and enabled it to rebound more swiftly than other markets. While the growth of international visitation reinforces Dubai’s rise as a major global tourism destination, it also signifies its status as a pivotal hub for trade, investment and enterprise,’’ says Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of the Executive Council of Dubai.

“The Dubai Economic Agenda D33 has outlined an ambitious new trajectory for the city to further consolidate its status as one of the world’s top urban economies and tourism destinations. As a major pillar of Dubai’s economy, the tourism sector will continue to play a key role in realising its future aspirations,” he adds.

The statement adds that Dubai’s multifaceted offering and its readiness to cater to travellers of different budgets and preferences saw the city being crowned the top global destination for the second successive year in the Tripadvisor Travellers’ Choice Awards 2023. This is only the second time in history that a city has won the coveted award for two years in a row, it says.

The statement adds that DET’s customised programming across markets focused on showcasing the city’s diverse proposition, spanning many leisure touchpoints from heritage to entertainment, outdoor adventures and beach activities, gastronomy, family-oriented experiences, shopping, festivals, sports and events, as well as yachting and cruise tourism.

Helal Saeed Almarri

“This significant uplift in visitation, which surpasses both pre-pandemic levels and marks a new record for Dubai’s tourism sector, is the result of a highly coordinated, sustainable and robust strategy, that is underpinned by a strong execution mandate and driven forward by the vision and continuous support of Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum and the emirate’s entire leadership, in line with the 10 year Dubai Economic Agenda D33,’’ says Helal Saeed Almarri, Director General of Dubai’s Department of Economy and Tourism.

DET says that these results further add weight to the depth, scale and resilience of Dubai’s tourism ecosystem, both domestically and across the world, all of which have been instrumental to supporting the city’s highly calibrated and agile strategy for advancing growth over the previous decade, mitigating risk and building a comprehensive framework throughout the entire value chain to drive our ambitions for the coming 10 years.

In the first half of 2023, Western Europe emerged as a significant contributor to tourism arrivals, making up 20 pc of the total international visitation, while the GCC and MENA regions delivered a combined 28 pc of the regional share, demonstrating Dubai’s allure as a trusted and favoured destination for visitors from neighbouring markets. South Asia held a 17 pc share of the total visitation, and Russia, CIS, and Eastern Europe combined contributed 14 pc. North Asia and South East Asia contributed 8 pc, while the Americas, Africa and Australasia contributed 7 pc, 4 pc and 2 pc, respectively, it says.

DET adds that in collaboration with domestic stakeholders and over 3,000 global partners, targetted campaigns highlighting the city’s unique offering, together with its dynamic global appeal and improved connectivity with various continents, resulted in Dubai achieving remarkable growth in key markets in the first half of 2023, notwithstanding current global economic headwinds, and geo-political and air capacity challenges.

The statement adds that Dubai’s hotels outperformed pre-pandemic levels across all hospitality metrics in H1 2023 including occupancy, Average Daily Rate (ADR), Revenue Per Available Room (RevPAR) and length of stay. Among the highest in the world, Dubai hotels’ average occupancy of 78 pc, is 2.2 pc higher than the occupancy achieved for the same period in H1 2019.

DET says that this growth is particularly noteworthy considering the 13 pc increase in hotel establishments and 26 pc increase in room capacity over the same period in 2019. Continued domestic and international investment into the sector further increased the hotel inventory, and by the end of H1 2023, Dubai’s visitors and residents could choose from a total of 810 hotel establishments and 148,689 rooms, compared to 714 hotel establishments that were open with 118,345 rooms at the end of H1 2019.

It adds that the robust performance of the hotel sector is also evidenced by the fact that the average length of stay of guests increased to 3.9 nights, up from 3.5 nights in H1 2019, highlighting the city’s appeal for longer-stay travellers, while the total of 20.73 million Occupied Room Nights in the first half of the year represents a 12 pc year-on-year growth and a 32 pc increase compared to the pre-pandemic period of H1 2019.

The average daily rate (ADR) of AED 534 during the first six months of the year surpassed the ADR of H1 2019  of AED 444, a 20 pc growth, while revenue per available room (RevPAR) of AED 415 in H1 2023, surged by 24 pc compared to the first six months of the pre-pandemic period of 2019 of AED 336.

Issam Kazim, CEO, Dubai Corporation for Tourism and Commerce Marketing.

Issam Kazim

“The H1 industry performance is testament to the future-oriented strategy of our visionary leadership to position Dubai as the best city in the world to visit, live and work. Within a highly competitive global tourism ecosystem, Dubai has continued to accelerate momentum and stay ahead of the curve, primarily by highlighting the diversity of the city’s offerings and the flexibility of our portfolio.  Central to our success in showcasing Dubai as a must-visit destination is fostering multi-level partnerships between the public and private sectors,’’ says Issam Kazim, CEO, Dubai Corporation for Tourism and Commerce Marketing.

“These collaborations with government entities, industry stakeholders and global partners form the backbone of our growth strategy, paving the way for a well-aligned and united cross-sector endeavour to create a unique positioning and drive international visitation, as well as support the wider talent attraction and economic growth agendas. As we move forward, we remain dedicated to delivering memorable experiences to all our guests, residents and the business and MICE community at large, to set new standards and push the boundaries of excellence globally,” he adds.

In terms of cruises, too, Dubai has registered a strong growth as the emirate says it concluded a highly successful 2022/2023 cruise season, with a 125 pc increase in cruise tourist footfall that saw 762,887 visitors disembarking through Mina Rashid Terminal and Dubai Harbour. The number of ship calls also surged by 29 pc compared to the previous season.

Leave a Reply

Get Magazine