For starters, shed the baggage
The majority – 61 per cent – of the UAE residents are willing to pay more for responsible, eco-friendly and sustainable travel trips.
According to a survey released by YouGov, people in the UAE are the second highest to pay for eco-friendly travel after Indians (68 per cent).
People in the UAE are more willing to pay for sustainable trips than residents in Indonesia, Mexico, China, Spain, Hong Kong, Canada, Sweden, Italy, France, and the US among others.
Similarly, around 65 per cent of people in the Emirates consider it important to choose travel companies that have a strong sustainability policy.
Driven by the government, sustainability has become a buzzword among residents and companies. To promote sustainability in the country, Expo 2020 Dubai hosted Terra – The Sustainability Pavilion as well as Sustainability District during the six-month-long mega event. This year, the UAE will also host the COP28 conference, the world’s largest gathering of leaders to discuss the impact of climate change.
All these efforts have raised awareness among the residents and contributed towards people increasingly supporting companies that endorse sustainability in their products and services.
The YouGov survey covered the views of 1,086 respondents from the UAE aged 18-plus.
With UAE being a global aviation hub, sustainability becomes highly important for the travel and tourism sector.
The YouGov survey found that UAE consumers have a greater appreciation for travel since the coronavirus pandemic, ranking the highest at 58 per cent out of the 18 countries.
This was reflected in Dubai International’s (DXB) last year passenger traffic figures which more than doubled to over 66 million in 2022 on the back of a strong recovery. Dubai International welcomed a total of 66,069,981 passengers last year, a massive year-on year-growth of 127 per cent.
According to the whitepaper on luxury travel post-pandemic released by YouGov, comparing the data by countries, the appetite for mixing work with leisure and workcations (working remotely whilst on vacation) is stronger in the UAE (18 per cent), India and Mexico (17 per cent) and Indonesia (15 per cent), and less pronounced in the European markets.
The other top priorities for UAE travellers when choosing a destination are great entertainment, quality luxury accommodation doing things that few others can do.
For starters, shed the baggage
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Travel agents say that people prefer visiting such destinations due to the less cumbersome process and waiting period for application to approval process
While tour operators are still waiting for more details on how the process will be rolled out, they are optimistic about the change