Abu Dhabi has opened a destination representation office to serve the high potential Indian market.
The Abu Dhabi Tourism & Culture Authority move comes as India is identified as holding out huge potential for the destination being less than three hours flying time from most Indian centres and with 124 flights a week linking nine Indian destinations with Abu Dhabi International Airport.
“This is a natural progression from the work we have done over the past two years when we have been getting the pulse of the Indian market via road shows and participation in trade fairs,” explained Mubarak Al Nuaimi, international promotions manager, TCA Abu Dhabi.
“We have reaped dividends from our ‘toe in the water’ approach with India now being our second largest overseas market for hotel guests after the UK.
“You can gauge our aspirations of the market by the fact that we are launching our first international road show for 2013 and we chose to have it in India.”
From January to the end of November last year some 125,180 Indian guests stayed in Abu Dhabi’s hotels and hotel apartments – a 30 per cent increase on the first 11 months of 2011 – and they accounted for 496,581 guest nights, which is a 34 per cent rise on the 2011 comparative period.
Indian guests are staying in Abu Dhabi’s hotels for an average of 3.97 nights.
“Should growth trends for the UK and India continue as they have been for the past 12 months, there is every likelihood that India will be Abu Dhabi’s largest overseas source market for hotel guests in 2014,” added Al Nuaimi.
“There is absolutely no doubt that India will play a key role in assisting us attain our 2013 target of 2.5 million hotel guests.”
Abu Dhabi has appointed a full team, based in New Delhi but to serve the whole country, including dedicated
MICE and PR representations.
Veteran Indian travel industry professional Bejan Dinshaw will lead the team as it looks to increase visitor numbers to Abu Dhabi, persuade those already travelling to stay longer and to win major corporate meetings business for the destination.