Despite the effects of the Iraq war and SARS on Dubai`s tourism industry, hotel occupancy for the first nine months of this year registered growth compared with the same period last year, said Khalid bin Sulayem, director-general of the Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DTCM).
“We are still in the process of compiling information to give an accurate picture. However, primary results indicate a growth in the number of guests in hotels and hotel establishments in Dubai,” he said.
“Despite the effects of the Iraq war and SARS, we have still managed to cross last year`s results and it surpassed our expectations. The outlook for the coming months appears positive and stronger than last winter.”
The DTCM has taken part in 29 exhibitions this year and has decided to introduce four new exhibitions in India, Turkey, Belgium and France to enlarge the scope of overseas promotions.
Meanwhile, the department will have the biggest-ever presence at the 24th edition of the World Travel Market which takes place from November 10 to 13, with 90 organisations extending their support to the DTCM in its initiative to promote Dubai at the global fair.
Dubai`s 425 square metre stand will have 54 booths that will offer information on the best of the facilities and attractions that have brought global acclaim to Dubai.
The number of co-participants has risen by 10 compared with the previous year, and the stand size has grown by 101 square metres.
Bin Sulayem said: “Our strongest representation and energetic public-private sector partnership showing at the WTM-2003 will surely woo more visitors to come to Dubai. Our hard work and inherent urge to grow and outshine others will enhance our international reputation and standing.”
“We are looking forward to and working towards a wonderful period of growth.”
The stand will offer visitors the chance to explore for themselves the fast emergence of Dubai as a perfect and safest round-the-year destination of business and leisure. Dubai`s MICE facilities will also remain in the spotlight.
Dubai hotel establishments received 447,006 UK guests last year against 348,477 guests in 2001, registering a 28.27 per cent growth.
More than 110 tour operators in the UK are promoting Dubai through their holiday packages - almost 21 per cent more compared with the previous year.
DTCM also announced the launch of an online registration facility for participation in its overseas exhibitions and road shows. This facility allows hotels, tour operators, travel agencies and other interested organisations to register online without difficulty.