Tourism industry insiders have welcomed the United Arab Emirates’ recent announcement granting visas on arrival for an additional 13 EU nationalities.
The Dubai Department of Tourism & Commerce Marketing’s (DTCM) revealed news of the UAE’s new visa exemptions at ITB Berlin with the decision hoped to further strengthen Dubai’s competitive advantage in the field internationally, allowing incentives and event organisers to offer packages to a wider range of nationalities with greater ease.
As a result of the decision, citizens of all 28 EU member states can now enter Dubai and the UAE without having previously applied for a visa.
According to the UAE’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the new exemptions apply to citizens of Poland, Slovenia, Slovakia, the Czech Republic, Lithuania, Hungary, Latvia, Estonia, Malta, Cyprus, Croatia, Romania and Bulgaria from March 22nd, 2014 onward.
With 50 per cent market share of the business events sector within the Middle East and North Africa region, Dubai Convention and Events Bureau, a division of DTCM, believe incentive travel will play a key role in further growing international market share of business tourism.
Speaking ahead of ITB, Hamad Mohammed Bin Mejren, executive director business tourism at the Dubai Department of Tourism & Commerce Marketing, said: “Dubai’s profile as a business events destination and compelling leisure destination is well known.
“DCEB’s presence at ITB Berlin focuses on a segment that utilizes and showcases both our business and leisure credentials.
“With plenty to do, excellent meetings infrastructure and world-class leisure facilities and events, we have an excellent incentive travel offer and are expecting this to be a segment with continued and sustained growth.”