DCT Abu Dhabi plans to attract 24mn+ visitors to emirate by 2023 end

By Arya M Nair, Official Reporter
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Image Courtesy; Kevin Villaruz/Pexels

The Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi (DCT Abu Dhabi), has announced new performance targets for Abu Dhabi, which include plans to attract more than 24 million visitors to the emirate by the end of 2023.

Mr. Saood Abdulaziz Al Hosani, Undersecretary at DCT Abu Dhabi, affirmed the start of an ambitious new chapter for the emirate’s tourism sector, ahead of the Arabian Travel Market 2023 (ATM). The new targets follow a surge in Abu Dhabi’s tourism sector in 2022, with hotel occupancy rates and other metrics demonstrating that the sector’s revival is well underway. The emirate received a total of 18 million visitors representing a 13 percent increase from the previous year, while the hotel occupancy rates reached 70 percent, which surpasses the Middle East average of 67 percent.

The emirate welcomed visitors from around the world, with the highest number of international visitors arriving from India, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the United Kingdom, and the United States, respectively. The improved domestic and international market performance can be attributed to increased destination awareness and consideration of Abu Dhabi’s increased range of year-round entertainment and sporting events, as well as trade events and roadshows.

HE Saood Abdulaziz Al Hosani_Abu Dhabi to attract 24mn visitors
HE Saood Abdulaziz Al Hosani Undersecretary DCT Abu Dhabi

“Our ambitious goal to welcome more than 24 million visitors by the end of 2023 builds on healthy growth over the past year. This encouraging performance was enabled through powerful collaborations and the delivery of memorable travel and business experiences across the whole year, supported by an integrated ecosystem of best-in-class services, infrastructure, and impactful marketing. In Abu Dhabi, we are demonstrating the power of partnerships across the tourism sector and the fact that collectively we can thrive.”

Mr. Saleh Mohamed Al Geziry, Director General for Tourism at DCT Abu Dhabi, said that “The success we have achieved so far inspires us to strive for more. We are committed to delivering on our ambitions for 2023 by further elevating the successful strategy of creating and delivering unique experiences for everyone to enjoy and a diverse range of year-round events for visitors in collaboration with our global IP partners. This is complemented by a MICE industry that continues to thrive, owing to the emirate’s world-leading venues, hotels and supporting facilities.”

Last year, Abu Dhabi Calendar successfully hosted a diverse range of over 100 events during 180 days, featuring an impressive line-up of A-list global talent. From the legendary Grammy award-winning singer Sting to K-pop sensations BLACKPINK, and Oscar-winning Indian composer A.R. Rahman, the events left audiences captivated and entertained.

The emirate also played host to some popular homegrown family festivals such as the Mother of the Nation (MOTN) and LIWA festivals, which added to the cultural richness and vibrancy of the city.

Related: DCT Abu Dhabi unveils new $100 million Culinary Investment Fund