Travel opportunities in the Kingdom

Danielle Curtis

With sustained investment in tourism, hospitality, and leisure segments, alongside ambitious giga projects, Saudi Arabia is also elevating the economic contribution of its tourism sector to 10 per cent of the national GDP by the end of the decade. Data from Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Tourism reveals a significant surge in inbound visitors during the first half of 2023, marking a 142 per cent year-on-year increase. This growth is mirrored in the domestic tourism segment, with a notable uptick in spending and average stay length. This all indicates a positive future for the country’s burgeoning tourism sector.

This underscores the importance of Arabian Travel Market (ATM) as a business facilitator for those exploring travel opportunities within the country. Demand for exhibition space from the Saudi market at ATM 2024 has been very positive. It is on target to see a near 50 per cent increase in KSA exhibitors, reflecting the Kingdom’s growing prominence in the global tourism landscape.

Among the high-profile exhibitors from Saudi Arabia are SAUDIA, flynas, NEOM, Dur Hospitality, AMSA Hospitality, and the Royal Commission for AlUla. Notably, first-time exhibitors will make up almost 17 per cent of the total Saudi participation, showcasing a diverse array of offerings.

To meet this demand, we will spotlight the Saudi market through a dedicated Saudi Village, providing a platform for attendees to learn more about this burgeoning tourism hub. Insights into Saudi products and opportunities, complemented by panel discussions, aim to foster collaboration and innovation within the Kingdom.

As the Kingdom works to diversify its economy in the post-oil era, sectors like tourism, aviation, and hospitality have emerged as key pillars of this transition. As such, ATM will retain its position as an eagerly anticipated platform for industry leaders to gain insights into this dynamic market and forge meaningful partnerships.

With vast opportunities and an incredible tourism story unfolding in Saudi Arabia, the excitement is undoubtedly growing ahead of ATM, where we welcome a truly international audience to the Dubai World Trade Centre (DWTC) from May 6 to 9.

* The writer is Exhibition Director, Arabian Travel Market