Dubai welcomes 12 million tourists in 9 months

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A surge in arrivals over the summer months accelerated Dubai’s tourism momentum, as the city welcomed 12.08 million international overnight visitors in the first nine months of 2019, according to official figures.

The total number of international overnight visitors grew 4.3% year-on-year to 12.08 million, with visitor numbers increasing from Saudi Arabia, Oman and China even as tourism numbers from the emirate’s biggest source market, India, declined.

The number of visitors from Saudi Arabia grew 2% year-on-year to 1.25 million, making it the second-biggest source market. Despite a 5% decline on the back of an slowing economy, India remained the biggest source market for visitors during the nine-month period to 1.39 million visitors. The UK is the third-biggest source of overnight tourists, but visitor numbers from there also dropped 2%, to 851,000.

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Oman ranked fourth and the number of visitors from the sultanate jumped 28% to 778,000, while the arrivals from China increased 14% to 729,000. Other source markets reporting double-digit growth include the Philippines (29% to 352,000), Nigeria (34% to 168,000) and Kazakhstan (24% to 106,000).

The supply of new hotel rooms continued to rise in the run-up to Expo 2020, the global trade fair that is expected to bring 25 million visitors to the emirate over a six-month period, with the number of rooms increasing by 7% year-on-year.

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