Dubai’s Department of Economy and Tourism (DET) is making efforts to receive increased tourists from Pakistan, with an ambitious plan for continued growth in 2024, according to a press release it issued today.
The plan is in line with the visionary Dubai Economic Agenda 2033 to further consolidate Dubai’s status as one of the top three global cities for business and leisure, it said.
“With Dubai welcoming 13.9 million international visitors from January to October 2023, surpassing the pre-pandemic performance of attracting 13.5 million visitors for the same period in 2019, Pakistan currently stands among Dubai’s top 10 source markets, delivering a noteworthy year-to-date visitation of 254,000 overnight visitors from January to October,” the press release reads.
“DET’s recent series of impactful roadshow workshops for tour operators in key cities like Islamabad, Faisalabad, and Sialkot underscores its dedication to forging direct connections with the Pakistani travel industry.
“The workshops serve as a cornerstone in DET’s strategy to redefine travel experiences and cement Dubai’s position as a preferred destination. They also provided a platform to empower tour operators with enhanced destination knowledge, enabling them to effectively position Dubai among various traveller segments, including leisure, corporate, and incentive groups.”
In 2023, DET scaled its efforts in the Pakistani market with the “impactful ‘Chalo Dubai’ campaign, strategically designed to elevate awareness of Dubai’s diverse offerings in entertainment, gastronomy, and lifestyle propositions.”.
Breaking new ground, the campaign’s “exclusive” Urdu-spoken video content aimed directly at the market, showcasing Dubai’s “unique experiences, affordability, and family-friendly environment.”.
Bader Ali Habib, Regional Head, Proximity Markets at DET, highlighted the workshops’ importance, stating, “Dubai is not just a destination; it’s an immersive experience tailored to individual preferences. Our goal is to create a personal connection with each visitor, offering experiences that resonate on a deeper level.
“These workshops are a pivotal initiative to directly engage with tour operators, the architects of travellers’ experiences. This marks our first in-market event in Sialkot and Faisalabad, demonstrating our keen interest in growing our business in these cities, given their direct connectivity to Dubai.”
Currently, Dubai has direct flights from eight cities in Pakistan: Karachi, Lahore, Islamabad, Faisalabad, Quetta, Multan, and Sialkot. This direct connectivity is a “testament to Dubai’s commitment” to facilitating convenient travel for Pakistani visitors,“ the press release said.
“Dubai is considered a second home for many Pakistanis, and we aim to build on this strong affinity, tailoring our efforts to suit multiple segments and profiles,” emphasised Habib.
In addition to targeting families, DET, according to its press release, is “strategically focusing on the stop-over segment, leveraging Dubai’s popularity as the most sought-after transit destination for Pakistanis traveling to the west,” adding that “the goal is to showcase Dubai’s offerings for short trips and layovers.”
Looking ahead to 2024, DET plans to scale its efforts, growing its footprint in the market by expanding media and trade partnerships.
“We promise Pakistanis brand new itineraries with attractions unexplored in previous visits and want every visit to Dubai to be unforgettable,” Habib added.