Hotel guests to all three regions of Abu Dhabi increased by five percent in September compared to the same month last year with 415,985 domestic and international visitors checking in to one of the emirate’s 163 hotels or hotel apartments.
Figures released by the Department of Culture and Tourism, Abu Dhabi recorded increases for hotel guests during the month of 14% in the Al Dhafra Region, 8% in the Al Ain Region and 4% in Abu Dhabi city with a total occupancy rate of 69%. Guest nights also increased by 15%, 6% and 5% respectively.
September’s rise has maintained the emirate’s 7% increase over the year so far in the numbers of hotel guests staying in the emirate and is on track to surpass 2016’s total of 4.4 million guests.
While September saw a slight drop in domestic tourists into Abu Dhabi, the month was marked by a surge in Chinese hotel guests, recording an increase of 133% in comparison to September 2016. The rise to more than 28,000 Chinese guests in the month can be attributed to marketing campaigns across China carried out by the department and the granting of visas on arrival from the start of 2017 to Chinese nationals.
India remained the largest international source market with more than 33,000 hotel guests during the month, while the UK was third behind China showing a 5% rise.
HE Saif Saeed Ghobash, director general, Department of Culture and Tourism, Abu Dhabi, said: “Globally, we have invested heavily in marketing Abu Dhabi as a destination of distinction, the perfect place to visit and explore, with an emphasis on an emirate steeped in history, culture and heritage. Our strategy is to highlight that Abu Dhabi has a wealth of natural and man-made attractions across all regions to entertain and excite the whole family while providing luxurious yet affordable choices of accommodation.
“China is showing outstanding growth for us and we have a long-term target of bringing 600,000 Chinese hotel guests a year to the emirate by 2021. To drive that kind of successful growth we recently ran our first ‘Abu Dhabi Week in China’ initiative to encourage even more businesses, partners and stakeholders to work with us in promoting the emirate. This promotional and marketing event, held in conjunction with our overseas offices, has also been rolled-out to India in October and November, with activity in Mumbai and Delhi to help drive inbound tourism. We anticipate these weeks celebrating the best of Abu Dhabi becoming annual fixtures, with more cities in both countries being added to the agenda as we progress.”
September also witnessed growth in hotel guests from the United States, a rise of 30% compared to 2016, and in Germany, where there was a 20% increase.