Dubai on Track to Meet Tourism Vision for 2020 Goal

Dubai experienced a five percent increase in its overall number of hotels while welcoming more than 11 million visitors for 2013 By: Cully Schneider
The number of guests to Dubai is steadily increasing. // © 2014 Thinkstock
The number of guests to Dubai is steadily increasing. // © 2014 Thinkstock

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According to figures recently released by Dubai’s Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DTCM), Dubai experienced an increase of more than one million guests in 2012 compared to 2013, totaling more than 11 million tourists for last year and setting a positive start for its goal of 20 million visitors a year by 2020. Guest numbers in 2013 reached 11,012,487, an increase in 10.6 percent over 2012 numbers.

"The strong growth shown in hotel establishment guests in 2013 is a positive first step on our journey to 2020,” said Helal Saeed Almarri, director general of DTCM. “Having announced the Tourism Vision for 2020 in May 2013, a 10.6 percent growth in hotel establishment guests demonstrates that we are on track to double the 10 million tourists received in 2012 to 20 million per year by 2020 and is an affirmation of the destination's ever increasing appeal.”

More specifically, from 2012 to 2013, the number of guests visiting Dubai from the U.S. increased by 0.8 percent, or from 506,387 total guests to 510,423, keeping the U.S. in its 4th place ranking. 

The DTCM released the current statistics ahead of the International Tourism Bourse’s global tourism industry gathering in Berlin last week, with the announced numbers indicating increases in key indicators such as hotel room occupancy and establishment revenues. Revenues for hotel apartment operators and hoteliers experienced a 16.1 percent increase last year. In addition, the quantity of hotel rooms and apartments increased from 80,414 (599 establishments) in 2012 to 84,534 (611 establishments) in 2013, demonstrating an over five percent increase overall.

Currently in the development pipeline for 2014-2016, an additional 139 hotel establishments will be included in the market with the addition of 48 hotel apartments and 91 hotels, creating a grand total of 750 hotel establishments and a little under 114,000 rooms.

"A 16.1 percent increase in revenues for our hoteliers is an indicator of the healthy state of the hospitality industry while an occupancy rate of 82 percent demonstrates to the hotel investment industry that Dubai is one of the world's most attractive investment opportunities,” said Almarri. "The financial incentive to develop more mid-range hotels has been received very well by the hotel investment and development industry and will swell the number of mid-range hotels which are constructed and opened in the next three to four years."

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