Skip to content Skip to Search
Skip navigation

Travel & Hospitality

Travel & hospitality news from the Middle East. All the important stories, plus authoritative opinion and analysis.

Saudi teams with Indian travel portal to boost tourism

The Saudi Tourism Authority has signed an agreement with EaseMyTrip, India’s second-largest online travel platform for air ticket bookings, as part of its goal to exceed 70 million visitors to the kingdom by the end of 2022. As part of the deal, EaseMyTrip will raise awareness about Saudi Arabia as a tourist destination in India […]

‘Flying taxi airports’ to get the green light in UAE

The UAE is expected to issue draft regulations on so-called vertiports – micro-scale airports that can support the expected growth of vertical take-off and landing aircraft (VTOLs) – in the first quarter of 2023. Mohammed Faisal al Dossari, senior director, Air Navigation and Aerodromes Department, UAE General Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA) said the regulations would […]

First commercial flight takes off from Yemen

Yemen’s national airline operated its first commercial flight in years from the capital Sanaa today, raising hopes for renewal of a United Nations-brokered truce in the seven-year-old conflict that has pitted a Saudi-led coalition against the Iran-aligned Houthis and put Middle East security in peril. Water canons sprayed Sanaa airport’s runway as an airplane of […]

Emirates should be allowed to fly to Berlin, says German exec

The bilateral air service agreement between Germany and the United Arab Emirates should be expanded to allow Dubai’s Emirates airline to operate direct flights to more cities, including the capital Berlin, a senior official from the Middle East office of the German National Tourist Board (GNTB) told AGBI. Under the existing air services agreement between […]

Despite the annual loss, Emirates chairman Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum was bullish about the Group's recovery

Emirates airline cuts annual loss to $1.1bn as travel rebounds

Dubai’s Emirates airline today posted an annual loss of $1.1 billion, a sharp improvement on the $5.5 billion loss in the previous year, as demand for international travel was boosted by governments easing pandemic-related curbs. The airline, which only operates international services, reported a 91 percent jump in revenue to $16.1 billion for the year […]

Business partnerships between India and the UAE are strengthened by the new deal

New deal gives India and UAE plenty to smile about

As the Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement between India and the United Arab Emirates comes into force, AGBI looks at a highly lucrative co-regional relationship Of the many alliances that have sprouted out of the Middle East, the one between India and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) stands out – seemingly weathering all global political and […]

Dubai International airport saw more than double the amount of travellers than in the same period last year

Passengers hit two-year high at Dubai International airport

Dubai’s main airport today reported its busiest quarter in two years as the rebound in international travel gains pace, with its chief executive predicting Dubai International could see pre-coronavirus figures by the end of 2024. The Gulf hub, one of the world’s leading gateways for international travel, handled 13.6 million passengers in the January-March period, […]

Reichstag building, Germany during daytime

Germany boosts Gulf travel budget with Russia savings

The German National Tourist Board (GNTB) increased its marketing budget this year in the Gulf by 10 percent, after making savings by shutting down several of its international offices, including Russia. “We actually got a 10 percent budget increase because, as you can see, we unfortunately had to close our Russian office,” Yamina Sofo, director […]

Emirates aims to start repaying Dubai $4.1bn in Covid aid

Dubai’s Emirates hopes that it will soon start paying back the 15 billion dirhams ($4.1 billion) in state assistance it receive from the government during the pandemic, its chairman said on Monday. The Dubai government injected billions of dollars into its flagship airline via equity injections over the course of the pandemic that had at […]

The Waldorf Astoria in Dubai

Dubai sees international visitors surge 214%

Dubai hosted 3.97 million overnight international visitors in the first quarter of 2022, up 214 percent from the same period last year, the emirate’s government said on Tuesday. The Expo 2020 Dubai world fair, which ran from October to March and which Dubai looked to as a to boost its economy, saw 24 million visits […]

Air travel took a massive hit globally as the pandemic took hold. Picture: Creative Commons

Saudi reveals post-Covid entry policy in tourism push

Government white paper proposes simplifying health-related entry protocols for travellers to the kingdom Saudi Arabia is working to introduce a shared framework by which countries can share information on local and global health crises to prevent disruption in air travel to and from the kingdom. The proposed policy, called Harmonising Air Travel and set out […]

Hotels swallow rising costs so guests can sleep at night

Despite costs rising to a three-year high, hoteliers in the United Arab Emirates told AGBI they are not planning to increase room rates, instead opting to squeeze their existing profits as they search for ways to increase operational efficiencies. The latest S&P Global UAE Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI), released on Monday, found that costs are […]

AerCap, the world's biggest aircraft lessor, has submitted a $3.5 billion insurance claim. Picture: Creative Commons

Billion dollar battle to begin for planes grounded in Russia

Lessors with hundreds of jets stuck in Russia are preparing for what one said would be a “vigorous” pursuit of insurance claims while maintaining discreet contact with some customers after Moscow blocked the jets from leaving. The loss of over 400 leased planes worth almost $10 billion since Western countries sanctioned Russia has led to […]

Will Abu Dhabi’s new tourism vision drive international influx?

Saadiyat Island, the cultural centrepiece of Abu Dhabi’s tourism offering, has unveiled a new vision which seeks to attract 19 million visitors and contribute AED 4.2 billion ($1.1 billion) in direct revenue by 2025. The Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi (DCT Abu Dhabi) and developer Miral unveiled the new strategy to support […]

Perth airport in Western Australia

Air travellers ‘still risk Covid infection,’ study warns

Passengers are still at risk of coronavirus infection while travelling on aeroplanes and in airports, researchers have warned. A study in the Journal of Travel Medicine reported that two Covid-positive passengers infected 15 other people during a 10-hour flight from Dubai to Australia in July 2020 – despite mandatory face masks for passengers, the use […]

Outdoors, Nature, Wheel

Belgian music festival launches adults-only desert glamping

Belgian music festival organiser Tomorrowland has teamed up with local partners to open an adults-only desert resort, which will include luxury glamping accommodation, it was announced yesterday at the Arabian Travel Market in Dubai. The desert resort, to be named Terra Solis, will be located in Dubailand, Al Yufra, 25 minutes’ drive from Downtown Dubai […]

Talabat riders refused to work over their pay and working conditions. Picture: Twitter

Food drivers stage walk-out over pay inspired by Deliveroo

Foreign food delivery workers in the United Arab Emirates staged a mass walk-out yesterday, calling for better pay and working conditions in a rare instance of industrial action in the country. The strike follows similar action this month in which foreign workers forced another company to suspend plans to cut pay. In the latest episode, […]

Water, Pool, Swimming Pool

70 million tourists to visit Saudi Arabia this year

Saudi Arabia aims to exceed 70 million tourist visits this year, up eight million on the year before. The kingdom has in recent years started to promote leisure travel as part of a strategy aimed at diversifying the economy away from oil, spearheaded by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. Visits were up 130 percent in […]