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India becomes Abu Dhabi\ s largest visitor market.

The latest figures from the Abu Dhabi Tourism and Culture Authority (TCA Abu Dhabi) have revealed that India has become the UAE capital's largest overseas visitor market.

More than 80,000 Indian guests have reportedly stayed in Abu Dhabi's hotels in the first half of this year, a 22 percent rise on the same period in 2012 and causing India to overtake the United Kingdom as the largest overseas visitor market.

TCA Abu Dhabi director general Mubarak Al Muhairi said: "We are benefiting from increased destination awareness in India following the opening a year ago of a dedicated promotions office there and also of increased air access from the country following Etihad Airways' equity stake in Jet Airways and the move by the Indian carrier of its Middle East hub to Abu Dhabi."

More than 78,000 Britons stayed in the Emirate's hotels from January to June, followed by Germany with 62,000 guests. While the number of visitors from Russia was smaller, with roughly 13,000, Russians stayed the longest in Abu Dhabi's hotels, checking in for an average of six nights, a six per cent increase over the same period last year.

TCA Abu Dhabi's latest figures also revealed that year-to-date hotel revenues in the Emirate rose 16 percent to AED2.7bn ($734m) despite a slight fall-off of three percent in average room rate to $122.

During the first half of this year, 1,333,339 guests also checked into Abu Dhabi accommodation, delivering 4,226,604 guest nights, a rise of 25 percent on the same period in 2012, while guests stayed on average 3.17 nights, up 12 percent on last year, which translated into an overall occupancy rate of 71 percent, up eight percent on H1 in 2012.

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Publication:Hotelier Middle East
Geographic Code:9INDI
Date:Jul 30, 2013
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