A bi-annual report provided by Musafir.com, described as a leading online travel agency, has indicated the role sports events will play for tourism in the Middle East.
According to the World Trade Organisation, the Middle East is becoming one of the most popular sports tourism destinations in the world, being valued at around €620 billion ($600 billion).
The region will be host to many major sports events in 2022, including the FIFA World Cup, as well as the Formula 1 Grand Prix in Abu Dhabi. It is thought that these events will give the Middle East strong tourism numbers for the fourth quarter of 2022.
In fact, according to the report from Musafir.com, sporting events will boost the region’s tourism and hospitality business by 30%.
Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates are seen as the strongest nations in the region regarding tourism numbers, with travellers mainly arriving from the United Kingdom, as well as other European countries, and countries in Africa and the Americas.
The report notes that the United Arab Emirates is the most preferred destination for travellers. Family-orientated activities, social and personal safety, adventure sports, room availability and seamless connectivity were among the reasons why the United Arab Emirates is seen as a top destination by international travellers.
“Sports events act as a catalyst and can have a tremendous impact on the economy – as we will see millions of fans gather to not only watch their favourite sport but also to have an unforgettable experience during their stay in the region,” said Sachin Gadoya, CEO and co-founder of Musafir and Musafir Business.
“We are anticipating an exponential growth in the tourism sector, due to the increasing number of tourists in Q4 of 2022 – as arrivals and occupancy will be even more than pre-pandemic times, which is a much-needed boost for the travel and hospitality sector.”