Dubai’s Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (Dubai Tourism) reaffirmed its strong commitment to support its stakeholders in the UAE and across the world through a series of virtual meetings to discuss the current and post-pandemic situation.
The meetings specifically reviewed the robust mechanism in place to safeguard the health of residents and visitors, and addressed a wide range of queries raised by participants on industry-related COVID-19 regulations, the phased reopening of economic sectors and various measures to kick-start the tourism sector.
Separate meetings were held with hotel owners, CEOs of hotel operator groups and other senior representatives from the aviation and hospitality sectors. The meetings with stakeholders were held within the framework of regular industry engagements initiated by the Department to provide a first-hand insight into industry developments and for an exchange of views with the aim of ensuring that the needs and concerns of stakeholders are brought to the attention of key decision makers and dealt with as quickly as possible within the current constraints to ensure the sustainability of the tourism ecosystem and business continuity.
Presided by the Director General of Dubai Tourism, the meetings were attended by hoteliers and top executives of hospitality groups including Jumeirah, Emaar Hospitality Group, Marriott International, Hilton, IHG, Millennium Group, Accor, Kerzner International, AAAGroup, Investment Corporation of Dubai, Nakheel, Majid Al Futtaim, Lakhraim, Abu Dhabi National Hotel, JA Resorts and Hotels, IHG, Shangri-La, Al Habtoor Group, Atlantis – The Palm, Hyatt International, Mandarin Oriental Jumeira, Dubai, Caesars Bluewaters Dubai, Wasl Hospitality and Rotana, in addition to Emirates.
His Excellency Helal Saeed Almarri, Director General, Dubai Tourism, commented: “The series of meetings that we have initiated with industry leaders are crucial in ensuring that we are all aligned with the collective efforts being made under the visionary leadership of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE, and Ruler of Dubai to restart the economy and for the effective implementation of our ‘Tourism Readiness’ strategy. As the continuous collaboration between the government and private sectors is key to reviving and maintaining tourism growth, it is encouraging to know that this unique model of public-private sector partnership combined with the comprehensive result-oriented citywide management of the COVID-19 pandemic, has already contributed towards achieving significant progress in the current and second phase of our recovery plan, which is the gradual reopening of economic sectors.”
HE Helal Almarri added: “With travel behaviours remaining fluid and travellers set to become even more discerning and prudent in their travel choices, we welcome the commitment shown by our partners to work together to help prepare the ground for a meaningful tourism restart so that the industry is well positioned to capture growth when the situation improves. Throughout this unprecedented journey that is set to lead to a new normal, Dubai Tourism reaffirms its support to its stakeholders and partners to facilitate the gradual recovery of the sector, restore confidence and trust among travellers and eventually once again highlight Dubai’s position at the forefront, as one of the world’s leading travel destinations.”
In addition to the extensive health and safety measures that have been implemented to minimise the impact of COVID-19 and safeguard the health of residents and visitors, the partners were also briefed on the progress made so far in the phased reopening of sectors including the travel and hospitality sectors and other infrastructure, attractions and facilities that could help boost demand for domestic tourism. The meeting highlighted the phased reopening of hotel beaches, restaurants and the resumption of other tourism activities and flights to certain destinations by Emirates.
The participants were also provided an update on the marketing activities that are underway across key international markets to ensure the city continues to stay relevant and front of mind to both first-time and repeat visitors so that they choose to visit Dubai when it is safe to travel. They were given updates about the ongoing digital activation #Till We Meet Again and the recently launched #We Will See You Soon campaign; the provision of timely and accurate information in real-time about the situation in Dubai via the Department’s various digital platforms; and the constant communication with over 3,000 partners worldwide to be alert and ready to adapt to the changing realities.
Dubai Tourism is also working with social media and technology partners to sustain interest in Dubai as a must-visit destination, as evident in the collaboration with Microsoft in launching ‘Dubai Virtual Backgrounds’ that allows users of web and video conferencing apps to download free images of iconic attractions in Dubai and use them as customised digital backdrops. As part of its #Till We Meet Again activation, Dubai Tourism also partnered Snapchat in a novel campaign that saw four augmented reality (AR) Snapchat Lenses being developed to transport users in the UK and France to Dubai to experience the city’s famous landmarks.
During Q & A sessions at the virtual meetings, Dubai Tourism provided guidance on some aspects of the current situation related to the tourism industry. The queries pertained to COVID-19 regulations, testing procedures, resumption of air services, particularly by Emirates, wedding and business events and the wider MICE industry.