Dubai has retained its strong position as a sought-after leisure destination in the British market with UK's largest long-haul tour operator showering praise on Dubai for being the ‘Big Star’ in 2005.
In its latest report on luxury long-haul travel markets, Kuoni revealed that in the 12 months to the end of June 2005, Dubai remained the most-opted destination for British travellers, maintaining the position it held last year.
DTCM Manager Media Relations, Eyad Ali Abdul Rahman, said: “Being on the Top 10 ranking list of this influential report reflects the prime position that Dubai has been enjoying in this crucial market over the years. This successful result is the outcome of our efforts to provide services and standards beyond the visitors’ expectations.”
He added: “With many more attractions taking shape in the emirate, there will be more visitors from the UK to Dubai in the months of come. Such an endorsement by the clients of this leading travel industry player encourages us to further improve our facilities and levels of service.”
Mr. Francis Torrilla, Product Director at Kuoni, remarked: “Dubai has grown in popularity because of the huge investment in its hotels and the extensive services offered by airlines such as Emirates, British Airways and Etihad Airways.”
He predicted that the Middle East would become more popular over the next few years with Dubai remaining its prime 'hot' attraction in the long-haul sector.
For honeymoons packages among Britishers, Thailand takes the pole position, followed by Maldives, Dubai, Mauritius, Malaysia and Indonesia.
The survey was compiled for the launch of Kuoni's 2006 brochure, which includes free connecting flights from airports including Edinburgh and Glasgow.
Kuoni is one of the leading travel organisations in the world and employs over 7,500 staff in 300 offices around the world.
Since 1966, Kuoni has led the UK long-haul market and has consistently been its most successful specialist tour operator.
Kuoni’s Dubai 2005 states: “It will not come as a great surprise to those who visit Dubai, how diverse a destination this is. Not only does it make for great shopping but the emirate also offers a wealth of activities including dune driving, scuba diving, golf, horse riding, dune skiing, wadi-bashing and sailing.”
The brochure features some excellent flight options, including that of Emirates, with its regional departures from Manchester, Birmingham and Glasgow.
The DTCM has successfully conducted a series of road shows in three cities of the UK in line with its aggressive marketing and promotional agenda to tap growth opportunities in this important market.
The UK is the largest source market of visitors to Dubai. There were almost 5.5 million visitors to Dubai from across the world in 2004, out of which 605,240 were from the UK, a 32% increase from 458,451 in 2003.
A total of 190 tour operators in the UK and Ireland now feature Dubai in their brochures, up from 140 in 2004.
Many potential tour operators expressed their interest in featuring Dubai in their programmes in the future, particularly the niche markets of Well-being, Golf and City Breaks.