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Fri 19 Mar 2010 12:48 PM

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Dubai plans cost friendly offers to woo tourists - paper

Emirates' 'Kids go free' offer to run much longer this year, starting May 14.

Dubai plans cost friendly offers to woo tourists - paper
BIG DEAL: Two children under 16 with every family travelling to Dubai on Emirates Airline in the summer can claim free flights, free meals, hotel stays and entrances to attractions.(Getty Images)

Dubai’s Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DTCM)  has launched a stimulus package for its tourism industry to attract and maintain its visitor numbers over the summer, according to a report.

Two children under 16 with every family travelling to Dubai on Emirates Airline in the summer can claim free flights, free meals, hotel stays and entrances to attractions, the The National daily reported.

Last year, the DTCM had launched the ‘kids go free’ promotion, in which one child aged below 16 could fly free when accompanied by two paying adults on an Emirates flight to Dubai. The offer ran from May 15 to Sept. 20, 2009, also included a maximum of two children receiving complementary accommodation, meals and entertainment during their stay.

However, according to The National, this campaign will run much longer this year, starting on May 14 to coincide with the Dubai Summer Surprises shopping festival and lasting five months.

The number of tourists to Dubai fell 5.7 percent in the third quarter of 2009, compared to the same period the previous year, the figures showed in January.

Data from Dubai Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DTCM), cited by The National, revealed the global recession was the reason for the decline.

“In terms of the drop-off in visitor numbers to Dubai they’re actually quite healthy if you look at the rest of the world. It’s not necessarily a reflection on Dubai as a destination,” Sean Tipton, a senior spokesman for the Association of British Travel Agents (ABTA), told the paper.

“The Kids Go Free programme is not simply just a cut-price promotion. It underlines our strategy of further establishing Dubai as a year-round destination and appealing to all target groups,” The National cited Saleh Al Geziry, the director of overseas promotions and inward missions at the DTCM, as saying.

Mr al Geziry said the department was working hard on promotional and marketing initiatives in what is an economically challenging time in many parts of the world.

Dubai International Airport was the 15th busiest in the world last year for passenger numbers while it ranked fifth for cargo traffic, a new report by the Airports Council International has showed.

A total of 40.9m passengers used Dubai's airport in 2009, a growth of 9.2 percent on the previous year.

The figures showed that Dubai was one of only four of the world 20 busiest airports to add new growth in 2009, alongside Beijing (ranked third), Bangkok (16th) and San Francisco (20th).

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ahmed 10 years ago

good move...but why does it take 2 years to realise this?cant we swallow our ego and speed up things?

Leigh Vernier 10 years ago

As a regular visitor to Dubai I strongly suggest two improvements; 1. My wife (non British) had to buy a visa at airport even for an overnight transit. This involves having to change to local currency, queue at two different desks. This creates a negative impression at point of entry. NOTE: her tickets showed she was flying on to another destination. 2. Last time we checked into a 5 star hotel - again in overnight transit - the hotel made us pay a deposit despite our having prepaid the hotel. The exchange rate was sheer piracy. When I complained, the manager just shrugged. Again, a bad impression created.

BhawanDeep Kaur 10 years ago

Sir, I am an Indian and the visa fees for tourist is very high.When will it be lowered.

BhawanDeep Kaur 10 years ago

Budget flights like Jazeera airway have stoped functioning from India.When can we expect another budget flight to Dubai.

John 10 years ago

Instead of banging on about yet another shopping mall or theme park, why doesn't Dubai set out the staff for its only real elements, such as The Creek, tbe Bastakia, Sheikh Zayed's house, the museum and the few other authentic (however airbrushed) aspects of the city. You seldom see tourists at The Creek, except going on the dining boats. There is still incredible charm to be found, yet is seems forgotten in favour of the artificial. I have been walking The Creek for 25 years, and it is still the only thing worth seeing in a city of boasts.

Brit happy to be here 10 years ago

Wonderful, that now means Emirates ticket prices will go up, as us expatriates have to subsidise the losses from this 'bring two chavs and a little chav comes from free' exercise.

Angelos 10 years ago

John, I couldn't agree more. The real experience of Dubai, and other places in the Arabian Peninsula is not found in the fancy, expensive new developments. Real experiences are in the beauty of the real life, in Deira, the fish market, the gold souq, the bastakiya and everything you have mentioned. Please read about a walking tour we enjoyed, just a week ago, in Deira and Bur Dubai and check out the pictures. http://www.couchsurfing.org/group_read.html?gid=2647&post=5220663#gpid5220663 I am so glad people share the same views with us.