Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 20 September 2019

Visitors spend more in Dubai than any other city in the world

Abu Dhabi was ranked as the fastest growing city in the Middle East and Africa, according to Mastercard

Dubai also retained its position as the fourth most visited city in the world for the fifth year in a row, welcoming 15.93 million international overnight visitors in 2018. Wam
Dubai also retained its position as the fourth most visited city in the world for the fifth year in a row, welcoming 15.93 million international overnight visitors in 2018. Wam

Visitors to Dubai spend more during their trip than in any other city in the world, shelling out $553 (Dh2,031) on average per day, Mastercard found.

When looking at the cities by number of dollars spent in 2018, Dubai topped the list for the fourth year in a row with a total spend of $30.82 billion, while Makkah took the No 2 spot for the second consecutive year with $20.09bn and Bangkok came in third, Mastercard’s Global Destination Cities Index 2019 found.

Graphic by The National 
Graphic by The National 

Dubai also retained its position as the fourth most visited city in the world for the fifth year in a row, welcoming 15.93 million international overnight visitors last year, according to the ranking of 200 cities.

Meanwhile, the UAE capital Abu Dhabi was ranked as the fastest growing city in the Middle East and Africa, with a compound annual growth rate of 16.7 per cent between 2009 and 2018 in overnight arrivals.

Girish Nanda, general manager for UAE and Oman at Mastercard said, once again, Dubai has “earned and maintained its position as the fourth most visited city in the world”.

“As the most attractive destination in the Middle East and Africa region for international visitors, Dubai connects people from all over the world with a diverse range of offerings for leisure and business travellers alike," he added.

Dubai has established itself as a tourism and financial hub for the Middle East and Africa thanks to its diverse leisure and business offerings such as the tallest tower in the world and the Dubai International Financial Centre. With Dubai Expo set to kick off later next year, Dubai’s economy is expected to grow 2.4 per cent in 2019, higher than last year on the back of increased economic activity associated with the event, S&P Global Ratings said on Tuesday.

Sanjive Khosla, chief commercial officer, Expo 2020 Dubai, said the city's “impressive visitor numbers” will continue to flourish when the event welcomes 192 nations.

“With millions of visitors projected to come from outside the UAE, we anticipate that the region’s first ever World Expo will create short and long-term benefits for Dubai’s tourism industry while enhancing its reputation as a dynamic and diverse global meeting point,” Mr Khosla added.

Mastercard’s latest index found the number of international overnight visitors travelling the globe has grown 76 per cent since 2009.

The most poplar destination overall is Bangkok with 22.78 million visitors, who stay 4.8 nights on average and spend $184 per day. Taking second position is Paris with 19.1 million visitors spending $296 per day, while London came in third with 19.09 million visitors with an average daily spend of $148.

Graphic by The National 
Graphic by The National 

All top 10 cities saw more international overnight visitors in 2018 than the prior year, with the exception of London, which decreased nearly 4 per cent. The forecast for 2019 indicates growth across-the-board with Tokyo expecting the largest uptick.

Updated: September 5, 2019 08:50 AM

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