Luxury family travel on the rise in the region

23 Mar 2015

Luxury family travel on the rise in the region

Special ATM 2015 seminar sessions to evaluate impact and value of the local and global family travel market as 25% of MENA residents opt for luxury accommodation and 20% choose to fly first or business for leisure

The number of wealthy families making travel a high-spend priority is on the rise, and this will be a major focus of the Arabian Travel Market (ATM) 2015 seminar series as the region’s inbound and outbound travel professionals look to capitalise on this niche market opportunity.

According to the latest YouGov report, the top three luxury holiday destinations for MENA residents are UAE (14%), Italy (10%) and Turkey (5%). Top-end hotels look set to profit from this trend with over a third of MENA residents usually staying in luxury hotels when traveling for leisure.

Looking at a region-wide breakdown, around one-quarter of GCC residents (27%) and Levant residents (23%) stay in luxury hotels compared to 17% of North African residents. Meanwhile, in terms of specific countries, one-third of Bahrain residents (34%) usually stay in luxury hotels - the highest percentage in the entire MENA region.

“This trend for luxury family travel offers opportunities for tour operators to create tailor-made packages that take into account not only family needs, but also the cultural considerations unique to the MENA region, and this opens up tremendous marketing opportunities. Luxury, and family luxury travel in particular, is a trend to watch, and one that will be covered extensively at this year’s show,” said Nadege Noblet, Exhibition Manager, Arabian Travel Market.

“Over half of MENA residents arrange all aspects of family travel themselves, yet 72% of MENA residents would book an all-inclusive luxury package if they were available. This is a phenomenon that has not as yet manifested itself in the GCC, apart from the Rixos Bab Al Bahr in Ras Al Khaimah; although it has long been a cost-friendly family option in Egypt’s key coastal destinations,” she added.

Two ILTM@ATM seminar sessions will look at various aspects of luxury travel: ‘Biting into Gourmet Travel’ and ‘Luxury Family Travel’. Moderated by Destinations of the World News and featuring a panel of luxury travel specialists, the Luxury Family Travel seminar will take place on Wednesday 6 May at 16:00 in the Visa sponsored Seminar Theatre. Here they will pinpoint some of the key trends of today's affluent families.

The panel discussion will wrap with an evaluation of the impact and value of the local and global family travel market within the overarching domestic and international luxury tourism industries.

As per the YouGov survey, the words judged to best describe luxury travel are differentiation (33%), discovery (31%) and exclusivity (27%).

With MENA residents primarily choosing to stay in four or five-star hotels, and 20% flying first or business class, family travel budgets are some of the most generous, with 17% of residents spending between US$3,000-5,000; 9% spending US$5,000-7,000; and 14% spending over US$7,000.

“MENA residents are extremely discerning when looking at luxury family travel, and the ATM 2015 luxury-focused seminars will give industry professionals the opportunity to examine how to cater to this important tourism sector,” said Noblet.

A contingent of 25 luxury exhibitors will also be present on the show floor, taking part in the ILTM @ ATM hosted buyer meetings programme. They will also contribute their professional expertise and experience in the luxury family travel arena to the discussion.

Companies representing the Middle East, Europe, the US and Asia include Hotel Condes de Barcelona, Vienna Tourist Board, Munich Tourist Office, Tourism Organisation Engadin St. Moritz, SIXTY SoHo & SIXTY Lower East Side, Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority, Luxe Travel Hawaii, Los Angeles Tourism and Convention Board, Los Angeles World Air, Taiwan Tourism Bureau, Jordan Tourism Board, Kempinski AG, Amathus Travel D.O.O, Armani Hotel Dubai, and of course international brands including Hilton Hotels.

Hosted luxury delegates also include Saudi Arabia’s Seyon Holidays, Belair from Lebanon, Lush Escapes of the UAE, Golden Gate from Saudi Arabia and Bahrain’s Algosaibi Travel.


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About Arabian Travel Market
In its 21st edition, Arabian Travel Market 2014, boasted more than 2,700 exhibitors and stand-sharers from 85 countries and attracted over 23,000 visitors from around the world.

Arabian Travel Market is part of Reed Travel Exhibition’s WTM Portfolio of events, which also includes World Travel Market, World Travel Market Latin America and World Travel Market Africa.

WTM Portfolio
The World Travel Market Portfolio is comprised of the leading leisure travel events in the world; World Travel Market in London, WTM Latin America in Sao Paulo, WTM Africa in Cape Town and Arabian Travel Market in Dubai.

The WTM Portfolio’s events are attended by the global travel and tourism industry’s senior executives to conduct business deals and discover the latest research, insight and opinion.In 2014, the WTM Portfolio facilitated around $7 billion in industry deals from negotiations between the more than 15,000 buyers, 9,500 exhibitors (1,500 main stand holders and 8,000 stand sharers) in attendance of its four events.

WTM is owned by the worldʼs leading events organiser Reed Exhibitions.

Reed Exhibitions
WTM Portfolio is part of Reed Travel Exhibitions, which is owned by the worldʼs leading events organiser Reed Exhibitions (RE).

In 2014, RE held more than 500 events in 40 countries bringing together more than six million people from around the world generating billions of dollars in business.

The YouGov Travel Oracle is an annual syndicated online study of consumer habits and attitudes towards travel and tourism. YouGov surveyed 22,686 online respondents across the MENA region between 7th August and 8th September 2014. Data is broadly representative of the population in MENA.

Media contact: Nathalie Viselé Director Shamal Marketing Communications PO Box 502701 Office 106, Arjaan Office Tower Dubai Media City Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Office: +971 4 3652711 I Direct : +971 4 3652712 I Mobile : +971 50 4576525 Fax:+971 4 4278703
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