Visa, one of the world’s leading electronic payments networks and lead sponsor ofthe Dubai Shopping Festival (DSF) 2011, has reported a 37 percent increase in spending from overseasvisitors compared to last year.
The total amount spent on internationally-issued Visa cards in the UAE came to just over US$ 406 millionthroughout the duration of the DSF, compared to US$297 million for the same period last year.
Department stores benefited the most from this increase, recording a 57 percent growth in spending over 2010, at $13.7 million. Retail outlets came out tops in the merchant category, with a total of $133.4 million, up 49 percent from last year. Accommodation (hotels and apartments) reported a 25 percent increase, at $90.6 million; while travel and entertainment also featured highly, with a total spend of just over $29 million, up 40 percent from last year.
Department stores benefited the most from this increase, recording a 57 percent growth in spending over2010, at $13.7 million. Retail outlets came out tops in the merchant category, with a total of $133.4million, up 49 percent from last year. Accommodation (hotels and apartments) reported a 25 percentincrease, at $90.6 million; while travel and entertainment also featured highly, with a total spend of justover $29 million, up 40 percent from last year.
The United Kingdom remains the top spending country, with visitors spending a total of $44.5 millionthrough the duration of the DSF. China followed close behind at almost $42 million, up 109 percent fromprevious years; while Saudi Arabia reported a total spend of $39.4 million up 83 percent over last year.
Sunday 13 February 2011 recorded the highest spend by International Visa cardholders, raking inUS$17.2 million in sales on that one day alone. On average, international visitors spent US$13.1 millionevery day during the DSF period.
Maysara Ghadban Traboulsi, Visa’s Head of Marketing Communications for MENA, said: “Over the years,the DSF has really helped to put the UAE on the map as a leading international shopping destination.Visitors from all over the world come to Dubai to take advantage of the great promotions on offer, andthese results are testament to the ongoing popularity of the shopping festival”.
Results and ratings sourced from VisaNet, Visa’s electronic payments processing network, handling anaverage of 130 million transactions every day.
Visa has sponsored the leading shopping and entertainment event since its inauguration in 1996. As theofficial payment partner of the DSF, Visa is the ideal platform to educate shoppers about the convenienceand security of electronic payments while simultaneously rewarding them with value added prizes.
Thisyear, all Visa cardholders using their debit or credit cards during the DSF were automatically entered intoa weekly draw to win a dream experience of their choice worth up to $15,000. Next week, Visa will beannouncing the four lucky cardholders who went into the weekly draw, by using their Visa card during themonth long festival, with a personalized dream holiday worth up too 15000USD.