Spread the love

Experience Abu Dhabi - logoIn a landmark announcement, His Highness Sheikh Khaled bin Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Chairman of the Abu Dhabi Executive Council, has endorsed the visionary Tourism Strategy 2030. Under the guidance of the Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi (DCT Abu Dhabi), this strategy is poised to revolutionize the emirate’s stature globally, promising an unprecedented expansion in scale and scope.

DCT Abu Dhabi Chairman HE Mohamed Khalifa Al Mubarak.

DCT Abu Dhabi Chairman HE Mohamed Khalifa Al Mubarak.

Aiming to attract a staggering 39.3 million visitors by the end of the decade, the strategy outlines a robust framework to more than double the tourism sector’s contribution to the GDP, targeting AED 90 billion annually by 2030. This ambitious goal sets a new benchmark for sustainable economic growth, leveraging the emirate’s rich cultural heritage and innovative tourism offerings.

The 2030 vision is about enhancing visitor numbers and transforming Abu Dhabi into a nexus of cultural and economic activity. The strategy plans to increase the hotel room inventory to 52,000, accommodate over 7 million international overnight visitors, and create approximately 178,000 new jobs, thereby strengthening the region’s economic fabric.

H.E. Mohamed Khalifa Al Mubarak, Chairman of DCT Abu Dhabi, articulated the transformative agenda: “The Tourism Strategy 2030 marks a pivotal moment in Abu Dhabi’s transformative journey, representing a vital lever in our ongoing evolution. This comprehensive strategy, developed in collaboration with our key partners, is a blueprint for sustainable growth and strategic development in the travel and tourism sector.”

Fostering Sustainable Growth Through Strategic Pillars

The strategy is built on four strategic pillars: Offering and City Activation; Promotion & Marketing; Infrastructure & Mobility; and Visa, Licensing, and Regulations. These pillars support Abu Dhabi’s comprehensive approach to achieving its ambitious tourism targets and fostering sustainable growth.

Offering and City Activation: This pillar aims to enhance the guest experience by introducing new cultural sites, theme parks, retail offerings, and hotel chains. It also aims to boost the emirate’s events calendar with year-round concerts, festivals, and family events. The dining landscape will significantly diversify, including introducing culinary schools and training programs.

Promotion & Marketing: DCT Abu Dhabi plans to increase its promotional efforts, expanding its international reach from 11 to 26 markets. This includes establishing strategic global partnerships with media outlets and well-known brands to create compelling, market-specific content across various touchpoints.

Infrastructure & Mobility: The strategy will enhance hotel room availability across various categories and improve roads, public transport, and infrastructure. These enhancements will simplify travel within Abu Dhabi and boost visitor inflow through increased flight seat capacity.

Visa, Licensing, and Regulations: This pillar focuses on streamlining processes to improve the ease of doing business and attract investment, enhancing visitor experience and tourism business operations.

Building on the success of 2023

The foundation of this strategy is built on the success witnessed in 2023, where Abu Dhabi’s tourism sector saw a remarkable surge, welcoming nearly 24 million visitors, a 27% rise in hotel guests and a 54% increase in international guests. This contributed approximately AED 49 billion to the UAE’s GDP.

Visitor numbers were further boosted by a 44% increase in MICE events, with 960,000 delegates attending 2,477 events, exploring Abu Dhabi’s rich array of attractions and dining options. The robust rise in visitor numbers underscores Abu Dhabi’s emerging status as a global centre for leisure and tourism, setting the stage for the ambitious goals of the 2030 Tourism Strategy.

In conclusion, Abu Dhabi’s Tourism Strategy 2030 is not merely a growth plan; it is a commitment to a sustainable, culturally rich, and economically vibrant future, ensuring the emirate’s position as a leading global destination for decades to come.




Written by: Michelle Warner