Dubai Tourism ramps up campaign in international markets to highlight EXPO 2020 and diverse destination offering

The Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (Dubai Tourism) is building on the current industry momentum by ramping up its international marketing campaign to drive further awareness of Dubai as a must-visit destination with a focus on next month’s Expo 2020 and the diversity of an ever growing destination offering. At a series of in-person networking events held last week in the key markets of UK, Russia and the United States, Dubai Tourism also shared its positive industry outlook with partners and leading media organisations.

Issam Kazim, Chief Executive Officer, Dubai Tourism, commented: “Aligned with the vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE, and Ruler of Dubai, we have increased our global marketing activities to reinforce the message that Dubai has completely regained its vibrancy and is the first choice destination for global travellers. As Dubai continues to safely welcome international tourists, we are pleased to engage with the media and our partners in key markets in cooperation with Expo 2020 to raise awareness of the region’s first World Expo and the unique destination proposition. We received encouraging feedback from participants at the recent engagements overseas, as we intensify efforts to attract more visitors from all of our strategic markets that are open. With the industry registering steady growth in the first seven months of 2021, we are confident that together with our partners we can collectively leverage the prevailing optimism to further accelerate momentum during this landmark year of Expo 2020 and the UAE Golden Jubilee.”

Kazim briefed the media and travel trade in Russia on 2 September on the various initiatives taken by Dubai in leading the global tourism recovery.  At this meeting, Sumathi Ramanathan, Vice President, Market Strategy & Sales, Expo 2020 provided insights into the mega event, which runs from 1 October 2021 to 31 March 2022.  Kazim also virtually joined a media breakfast hosted by Dubai Tourism in London on 8 September, the first in-person meeting to be held in the UK market since the start of the pandemic. The event, attended by consumer and travel trade media, saw Dubai Tourism addressing a range of topics, from industry updates to new attractions like Museum of the Future, Deep Dive Dubai, the world’s deepest pool for diving and Ain Dubai, the world’s tallest observation wheel to the positive development of UAE being moved to UK’s amber travel list.  

Another promotional event was hosted in New York on 8 September that featured a pre-recorded speech by the Dubai Tourism CEO, and a live presentation by Matthew Asada, Deputy Commissioner General for the USA Pavilion, Expo 2020.  Attendees including representatives from the media and travel trade, also had an opportunity to watch a screening of the third trailer of Dubai Presents, the latest global campaign featuring Hollywood stars Jessica Alba and Zac Efron that was produced to showcase the exceptional experiences that visitors can enjoy during their stay in Dubai.  Filmed by Director’s Guild award-winning director Craig Gillespie, Dubai Presents is being rolled out in 27 countries across 16 languages via cinema, print, broadcast, out of home, digital and social media channels. It has generated over 200 million views since it was launched just over a month ago with the Spy Action trailer, followed by ‘RomCom’ and ‘Buddy Comedy’.

Latest data from Dubai Tourism shows that the city welcomed close to 3 million visitors from January to July 2021. Dubai also ranked second globally ahead of London and Paris in terms of hotel occupancy with hotels enjoying 61% average occupancy levels in the first seven months of 2021. Dubai was one of the first cities globally to reopen its markets and businesses, and continues to stay open. This was achieved through a prudent and staggered approach to the reopening of sectors while ensuring strict compliance with globally benchmarked health and safety protocols. The UAE also has one of the world’s highest per capita vaccination rates. With the return to normal life, residents and visitors are now able to experience the diversity of Dubai’s offering covering the tourism, leisure, entertainment and retail sectors, with precautionary measures across the board.

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