The Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi (DCT Abu Dhabi) revealed signs of progress within the tourism sector as the emirate prepares to gradually open up to international travel. Hotel occupancy rates in Abu Dhabi have risen by 3% year-on-year since 1 July and are expected to rise further with the launch of a number of initiatives within the emirate aimed at boosting the sector.
The UAE government has received global praise for its response in confronting the pandemic, as well as for how it has proactively managed its social and economic impact. The local government in the emirate in turn has relentlessly increased testing for COVID-19, and implemented strict measures, which has been reflected in cases dipping to less than 1% in Abu Dhabi City as a result of the government’s efforts.
DCT Abu Dhabi has also been working closely over the past period with industry partners and stakeholders to introduce a number of initiatives to aid hotels and cultural attractions in reopening.
The Go Safe certification programme is amongst the initiatives rolled out to boost consumer confidence and the tourism sector simultaneously. The programme aims to regulate hygiene standards across all hotels through implementing a strict set of guidelines across all tourism destinations including malls, restaurants, museums, public beaches, theme parks and other attractions. To date, more than 80% of hotels in the emirate have started the process to become ‘Go Safe’ certified, with W hotel and Louvre Abu Dhabi amongst first venues to obtain the certification.
UFC Fight Island, which is taking place on Abu Dhabi’s Yas Island from 11-25 July, is another major step towards rebooting tourism in the capital of the UAE.
“The progress we have seen since the start of this month was achieved by simply leveraging our offerings and the existing high standard of hospitality, to help us speed up the enlivenment of our sector and elevate further from that point,” said Ali Hassan Al Shaiba, executive director of tourism and marketing at DCT Abu Dhabi.
Hotels in Abu Dhabi have started opening after adhering to guidelines set out earlier this month following an extensive period of sterilisation.