21 May 2008

Dubai has gained a reputation as a luxury holiday destination, a travel industry expert has stated.

Frances Tuke from the Association of British Travel Agents (ABTA) said the region is a “four or five star” location which appeals to affluent visitors. This, she said, has led to tourism generating considerable sums of money for the Dubai economy, which are being pumped into the sector to improve it further.

Ms Tuke believes its emergence as a leading holiday destination has had a profound impact on Dubai and its economic performance in recent years.

She commented: “Dubai, quite a while ago, was really just a desert state; [now] it’s one of the fastest growing cities in the world.”

According to official government figures, Dubai attracted more than six million holidaymakers in 2007. Tourism was said to account for about 18 per cent of its gross domestic product during this period.