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The Middle East Wants to Become a More Popular Wedding Destination

News Nowadays, traveling is not only about beach holidays and sightseeing. Event tourism and niche tours like wedding tourism have been increasingly popular in recent years. While it might look like not many people want to celebrate the start of their married life in a foreign country, destination wedding tourism has become a US$90 billion global market. No wonder why so many countries want to develop this type of tourism. For couples from many countries, organizing their weddings abroad is a great way to save money. For example, an average wedding in the UK costs £27,000 while the average price of an overseas wedding is £6,585.

The Middle East is a popular tourist destination with some true stars like the UAE – Dubai hotels offer unparalleled experiences and exceptional service. That being said, the region is not a popular choice when it comes to hosting weddings. The share of the Middle East in wedding tourism is only US$4.5 billion of 5%. As the Arabian Travel Market mentions, the UAE is the only popular destination in this area, and it is easy to understand why. A large number of high-quality Dubai, Ras Al Khaimah, and Sharjah hotels; relaxed visa regulations; striking nature, such as mountain ranges and gorgeous tropical beaches; and, the last but not the least, sunshine all year round make this country an attractive choice in the eyes of soon-to-be-married couples.

For the Middle East, destination wedding tourism could be a powerful tool that is helpful in developing tourism in the region. In a growing competition for customers, overseas weddings become very important for the global hospitality industry. Weddings are good for local economies too as these tourists usually spend more than regular vacationers. However, to be able to host overseas weddings successfully, hotels and tour agencies need to offer a more personalized experience.

To discuss this new trend, the Arabian Travel Market will cover this theme during the 2020 edition of their annual show. Known as the barometer for tourism in the Middle East and North Africa, Arabian Travel Market attracted almost 40,000 visitors and more than 100 exhibitors to its 2019 event.

The main theme of the 2020 exhibition has been already announced. It is “Events for Tourism Growth”. The event’s organizers hope that they will be able to gather many hospitality professionals in one place and successfully discuss steps that the Middle East can take to attract more overseas weddings and tourists from different regions of the world.


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