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Dubai records 5.18m international overnight visitors in Q1

From January to March this year, Dubai’s hotels maintained a room occupancy rate of 83 percent. (WAM)
  • Dubai begun 2024 by being named the No.1 global destination for an unprecedented third successive year in the Tripadvisor Travellers’ Choice Awards.
  • From January to March, the Western Europe region was Dubai’s biggest source market with 1.138 million arrivals, a 22 percent overall share.

Dubai, UAE — Dubai welcomed 5.18 million international overnight visitors from January to March 2024, an 11 percent rise over the 4.67 million tourist arrivals during the same period in 2023, according to data published by Dubai Department of Economy and Tourism (DET) at the 31st edition of Arabian Travel Market (ATM).

In 2023, with Dubai received a record 17.15 million international overnight visitors, reflecting the ambitious goals of the Dubai Economic Agenda, D33, to further consolidate Dubai’s position as a leading global city for business and leisure.

Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of The Executive Council of Dubai, said, “The number of visitors in the first quarter of 2024 indicates that Dubai is on course for another standout performance this year after the emirate received a record number of visitors last year, with international visitors reaching 17.15 million.”

Dubai begun 2024 by being named the No.1 global destination for an unprecedented third successive year in the Tripadvisor Travellers’ Choice Awards, the first city to achieve this unique accolade.

The rise in international tourists during Q1 is the result of city-wide strategies established across vital pillars in the tourism sector, including sustainability, accessibility, entrepreneurship, and innovation, while various other key factors contributed to visitation growth, an official statement said.

The city hosted several major industry events, such as Arab Health, Gulfood and the Dubai International Boat Show, while new hotel openings included The Lana, Dorchester Collection’s first property in the Middle East; SIRO One Za’abeel, Dubai’s first fitness hotel; Marriott Marquis Dubai; and Hilton Dubai Creek Hotel & Residences. Catering to all budgets and preferences, Dubai’s diverse offerings are constantly evolving, supported by world-class infrastructure, exceptional service at all touchpoints, and continuous collaboration between the government and private sectors.

Helal Saeed Almarri, Director-General of Dubai Department of Economy and Tourism (DET), said, “In addition to our high-performing tourism ecosystem, these figures also continue to be spurred by upswings in the number of international businesses setting up, existing companies expanding business lines and catchment footprint from Dubai, a very healthy MICE sector, and an influx of new talent relocating to the city, demonstrating the wide-reaching and synergistic impact of a successful and well calibrated D33 economic blueprint.”

From January to March, the Western Europe region was Dubai’s biggest source market with 1.138 million arrivals, a 22 percent overall share, followed by South Asia with 869,000 visitors (17 percent) and CIS and Eastern Europe with 817,000 (16 percent). From a regional perspective, the GCC and MENA were fourth and fifth, accounting for 664,000 (13 percent) and 605,000 (12 percent) arrivals respectively. The North-East Asia and South-East Asia region recorded 470,000 arrivals into Dubai (a 9 percent share), followed by the Americas 344,000 (7 percent), Africa 202,000 (4 percent) and Australasia 70,000 (1 percent).

From January to March this year, Dubai’s hotels maintained a room occupancy rate of 83 percent, a notable achievement given the 2 percent year-on-year increase in overall room supply to more than 152,000. Occupied room nights increased by 2 percent, with 11.2 million at the end of Q1 2024, compared to 10.98 million in 2023. Average Daily Rate (ADR) rose to AED638 during Q1, marking a notable increase of 5 percent compared to the same period in 2023, while Revenue Per Available Room (RevPAR) increased by 4 percent compared to last year, from AED504 to AED527.

This performance clearly indicates city hoteliers are maintaining competitive prices and revenues amid high levels of occupancy. Total available rooms in Dubai reached 152,162 by the end of March, up from 148,877 rooms in March 2023, while the number of establishments stood at 832 at the end of the first quarter, compared to 814 during the same period last year.

Dubai had a substantial total of 96,484 hotel rooms across five-star and four-star establishments, representing a significant 64 percent share of the overall hotel rooms in the city, with average room occupancy typically ranging from 81 percent to 84 percent. One- to three-star hotels had a 19 percent share of Dubai’s overall hotel market, with the category comprising 29,100 rooms and a commendable 82 percent room occupancy rate. The hotel apartments segment boasted a total of 26,578 keys at the end of the first quarter and maintained a strong average room occupancy ranging from 84 percent to 85 percent.