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Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 19 June 2018

Cairo is top Mena performer in November: EY hotel survey

The city gained the most in terms of occupancy, daily rates and revenue per room

Egypt’s tourism industry, an important foreign currency earner, has been recovering since the 2011 uprising. Mohamed Abd El Ghany/Reuters
Egypt’s tourism industry, an important foreign currency earner, has been recovering since the 2011 uprising. Mohamed Abd El Ghany/Reuters

In November, Cairo emerged as the top hotel market to record higher occupancy, daily rates and revenue per available room among Mena cities tracked by advisory firm EY, as government incentives to charter airlines paid off.

Hotel occupancy in Egypt's capital city jumped 14.6 per cent to 77.9 per cent in November from the same period a year earlier, while average daily rates (ADR) rose 15.6 per cent and revenue per available room (RevPar) surged 42.1 per cent, according to a hotel survey by EY.

“The significant increase in occupancy levels may be attributed to the government’s efforts in November to revive the tourism industry by increasing incentives for charter airlines carrying a certain number of passengers on international flights,” said Yousef Wahbah, Mena real estate, hospitality and construction sector leader at EY.

Egypt’s tourism industry, an important foreign currency earner, has been recovering since the 2011 uprising and the suspected downing of a Russian plane in Sinai in 2015, which killed all tourists on board and deprived the country from a major tourist source market.

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Overall, the region’s hotel industry had mixed results in November. In the Arabian Gulf region, all markets except Kuwait and Oman had lacklustre performance.

All three indicators fell in Dubai, which recorded an increase in tourist arrivals but is suffering from an increase in supply of hotel rooms.

Occupancy in November in Dubai fell 1.3 per cent to 88.2 per cent, ADR dropped 1.4 per cent and RevPar declined 2.8 per cent.

In Abu Dhabi, occupancy surged 6 per cent to 88.6 per cent because of the Louvre opening and the Forumla One race in the emirate. ADR decreased 4.1 per cent but RevPAR grew 2.9 per cent.

“The Mena hospitality market is expected to continue the same trend until the end of the year,” said Mr Wahbah. “In the GCC region, the hospitality market can expect some improvements across select cities over the next few months due to better weather conditions as well as the shopping attractions.”