Dubai is no longer just a flashy city in the Middle East. With a well-planned tourism strategy, it offers much more than high-end shopping. The UAE government’s efforts have made tourism a significant contributor to Dubai’s economy, representing 20% of its GDP and providing jobs for around 6% of the population.
To accommodate the increasing number of tourists, a second international airport, Al Maktoum International Airport, is being built and could become the world’s largest by 2025, handling up to 160 million passengers.
The Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DTCM), established in 1997, works with various stakeholders to promote and develop the tourism industry. Dubai’s tourism focuses on hotels, restaurants, meetings, conferences, travel services, and various types of tourism.
Dubai expects to have 20 million tourists by 2020, and during the EXPO 2020, it anticipates 25 million visitors, leading to increased demand for hotel rooms. The city has a high concentration of luxury and upscale hotels, but there is a need for more midscale options.
Dubai’s hospitality market faces the challenge of avoiding oversupply of hotel rooms after the EXPO, and the government must ensure a steady influx of visitors.
The city’s business-friendly environment and excellent infrastructure have attracted international food chains and restaurants. There are about 13,000 restaurants in Dubai, offering diverse cuisines due to the expatriate population.
Dubai’s tourism sector is continuously growing, with collaborations and unique concepts driving its double-digit growth. It excels not only in hospitality but also in hosting meetings, events, and conventions, making it a top business destination.
Key attractions such as Burj Al Arab, Burj Khalifa, Atlantis Hotel, and Palm Jumeirah make Dubai a must-visit place.
As part of thematic tourism, Dubai offers desert, cruise, green, halal, and medical tourism. The city plans to build hospitals to attract medical tourists and boost its economy.
The Dubai Government’s initiatives are expected to boost tourism sustainably.