Abu Dhabi’s tourism industry is heading for Australia later this month for a three-destination road show aimed at capitalising on growing awareness in, and business from, Down Under.
A nine-strong industry delegation, led by Abu Dhabi Tourism & Culture Authority and including Etihad Airways, DMCs, hoteliers, tour operators and Yas Island, will be in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane from July 29th-31st, training retail travel agents and MICE consultants on the latest destination offerings.
The road show comes just weeks after Etihad Airways’, the national carrier of the United Arab Emirates, sealed a five-year sponsorship deal with leading Australian football team Melbourne City FC and follows the airline’s July 15th launch of daily services from Perth to Abu Dhabi.
“Our timing could not be better,” said Mubarak Al Nuaimi, director promotions and overseas offices, TCA Abu Dhabi.
“Etihad’s new sponsorship deal and the new Perth flights will bring increasing focus on Abu Dhabi and we need to capitalise on this.
“We anticipate meeting around 350 agents and consultants from both the leisure and MICE segments including key influencers from Australia’s top retail travel chains and wholesalers and tour operators who currently contract Arabian Peninsula products.”
The road show comes as more Australians than ever check into Abu Dhabi’s hotels and hotel apartments.
In the first five months of this year some 16,952 Australians stayed in the emirate’s hotels – an eight per cent rise on the same period last year.
Yet industry-wide, Abu Dhabi’s tourism stakeholders believe much more can be achieved from the Australian market, particularly from the visiting friends and relative and stop-over trade.
Abu Dhabi’s entertainment destination of Yas Island says Australia represents a significant and developing share of its business.
“Yas Island is very keen to build on both the existing stop-over market and the point-to-point market from Australia,” said Clive Dwyer, director, Yas Island Destination Management.
“We are capitalising on our convenient location for long-haul travellers, whether they are seeking a memorable short break, or are here for a long stay to indulge in our unique destination offerings.
“We’re also planning to further tap into the visiting friends and relatives market from Australia as well as point-to-point for those looking to conduct inspiring, unconventional business events.”