UAE residents 'keen to take holidays in the near future'

20/12/2012 - Dubai Lifestyle News Bob Brunskill
UAE residents 'keen to take holidays in the near future'

Nearly four out of every five UAE residents plan to take a holiday in the coming months, which suggests that workers are profiting from the country's improved economic performance.

A new study conducted by MasterCard has shown that 79 per cent of people will travel for leisure purposes in the near future, up by nine per cent on results from 2011.

The Asia-Pacific region is the most popular, with 47 per cent of UAE travellers planning to head to this part of the world for their next holiday, while 43 per cent will stick to destinations in the Middle East and Africa. Around ten per cent said they would give Europe a try.

In terms of specific destinations, India is the clear favourite, although the UK and Malaysia are also very appealing at the moment.

Eyad Al-Kourdi, UAE country manager for MasterCard Worldwide, said it is very encouraging to see so many UAE residents being in a position to explore the world, which he feels is a clear reflection of growing consumer sentiment.

"At the same time, the UAE remains a very attractive destination for leisure travellers from around the globe," he remarked.

"In fact, the recent MasterCard Global Destination Cities Index ranks Dubai eighth globally in terms of expected inbound international visitors in 2012, while Abu Dhabi is the world's fourth fastest growing destination city by international visitor numbers."

With so many people expected to go in and out of the country next year, the strain placed on Dubai International Airport will be immense.

Dubai Airports revealed last month that the facility handled 47.5 million passengers in the first ten months of 2012 and overall visitor numbers for the year are expected to reach the 57 million mark.

As the MasterCard study suggested, Dubai is an incredibly popular holiday hotspot, which is hardly surprising for a destination that has so many wonderful beaches and an enviable climate, not to mention a multitude of top-class shops, restaurants and hotels.