ISLAMABAD ( Web News )
Dubai welcomed 4.67 million international overnight visitors in the first quarter of 2023, compared to 3.97 million tourists during the same period in 2022. This marks a 17 % YoY growth and the city’s best Q1 performance since the pandemic, placing it firmly on track to becoming the most visited international destination, according to the latest data published by Dubai’s Department of Economy and Tourism (DET).
The growth, which sets the city on course to full tourism recovery, contributes to the goal of the Dubai Economic Agenda D33 launched by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai this January, to consolidate Dubai’s status as one of the world’s top three cities.
His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of The Executive Council of Dubai, said: “The remarkable growth in international visitation achieved by Dubai in the first quarter of 2023 demonstrates the city’s emergence as one of the key destinations leading the way in the rebound of the global tourism sector. This achievement has been made possible by the far-reaching vision of the leadership to transform Dubai into one of the world’s fastest-growing metropolises and the globe’s pre-eminent hub for travel, talent, entrepreneurship and investment. The Dubai Economic Agenda recently launched by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, charts an ambitious new path for Dubai to enhance its contributions to shaping the future of the global economy. The tourism sector is not only the strongest pillars of our economy but also a key enabler of Dubai’s distinctive role in the world as a bridge between markets, cultures and regions. In the years ahead, Dubai will continue to introduce new pathbreaking initiatives to offer a distinctive proposition for travellers and achieve its goal of becoming the world’s best place to live, visit, work and invest in.”
The latest industry results – announced at the ongoing 30th edition of Arabian Travel Market in Dubai World Trade Centre, positions Dubai as the fastest recovering destination globally, achieving 98 % of pre-pandemic levels in Q1 2023, and exceeding the projection made by the United Nations World Trade Organisation that international tourist arrivals could reach between 80-95 % of pre-pandemic levels this year, especially in Europe and the Middle East.
The number of visitors in Q1 2023 was just two percentage points short of pre-pandemic volume of 4.75 million tourists that arrived in Dubai in the first three months of 2019, a remarkable achievement since turning the tide in July 2020 by reopening the city to international tourists, and in spite of current global economic headwinds. The industry performance also capped an exceptional first quarter for Dubai, which saw the city being crowned again as the No.1 global destination in Tripadvisor Travelers’ Choice Awards 2023, making it only the second time in history a city has won the coveted award for two years in a row.
His Excellency Helal Saeed Almarri, Director General of Dubai’s Department of Economy and Tourism, commented: “Q1 2023 has set us off on a very strong trajectory for the year and is driving us closer towards realising the vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE, and Ruler of Dubai to make Dubai the most visited and re-visited destination. The positive industry performance is an endorsement of our well-defined strategy, and a testament to the unwavering support of our tourism industry partners and stakeholders. The coming decade will see our industry going through extraordinary phases of transformation, in terms of infrastructure, technology, attractions and experiences, as we focus on achieving the goals of the Dubai Economic Agenda 2033.
“To maintain Dubai’s global appeal as the first-choice destination for travellers, we will continue to follow the multi-pronged blueprint that largely contributed to our success in 2022 – evolving the destination promise, a multi-geographic approach to markets, constant international outreach through global campaigns, hosting international MICE, business and leisure events, and further improving stakeholder relationships. As we look ahead to further accelerating momentum in our tourism sector, the pillars of sustainability, gastronomy, trade, and technology will form the foundation of our future success. Notably, this year is declared as UAE’s ‘Year of Sustainability,’ marking a major milestone for us, as the city prepares to host COP28, the UN Climate Change Conference. Sustainability will form the core of all that we do, incorporating sustainable practices into every aspect of the visitor experience to advance our journey towards becoming the world’s best city to live and work in,” HE Helal Almarri added.