Tourists Flock To Dubai In Record Numbers, With 1.5M Visiting In January

Tourists Flock To Dubai In Record Numbers, With 1.5M Visiting In January

Dubai’s 1.47 million overnight visitors in January is higher than January 2022’s 980,000 visitors albeit lower than 2019’s 1.6 million.

The 63 percent increase over 2022 saw three countries lead the way for international guests. First was India at 186,000, then Russia at 115,000, and third was Saudi Arabia with 98,000 visitors. 

For Russians wanting to flee the country following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Dubai became a haven. The influx saw air traffic grow at 228 percent between Moscow and Dubai compared to pre-pandemic according to travel analytics firm ForwardKeys.

The influx of travelers has seen a price increase and limited availability compared to last year for hotel rooms. According to online travel marketplace Wego, hotel occupancy is at 80.5 percent, around 7 percent higher than in the same month in 2022.

In Dubai Department of Economy and Tourism, Jumeirah Group (the Emirati state-owned luxury hotel chain) is also adapting to the times. They introduced Jumeirah Mobile Check-In which is an industry-first biometric and digital technology solution to the ‘old way’ of having guests check-in. 

Global Business Travel Association (GBTA) predicts that travel in the Middle East and Africa (MEA) is expected to return to pre-pandemic levels by 2024 as business travel in the region is recovering more rapidly than in any other region.

According to the most recent Business Travel Index Outlook annual forecast and outlook (2022), the MEA region achieved 86 percent of its 2019 levels during 2022 and accounted for $23 billion of the $933 billion travel spend globally in 2022.

In the region, Egypt is aiming to attract 30 million visitors by 2028 and as such is digitizing health and safety standards and lessening restrictions to unleash the private sector investment. 

Growth can be also seen as Marriott International will be opening three properties on the luxury island destination Sindalah. These hotels will be the first hotels to open on the island off Saudi Arabia.