Mabrian launches Middle East Tourism Barometer analysing Q2 2023

Mabrian launches Middle East Tourism Barometer analysing Q2 2023

The UAE, Oman, Saudi Arabia and Qatar emerge as lead markets

Leading provider of travel intelligence solutions Mabrian has released the Middle East Tourism Barometer in collaboration with renowned data analysis firm Katalysts. 

The comprehensive report provides valuable insights into the tourism industry based on the second quarter of 2023 in the Middle East region, showing that the UAE and Oman are the top performers in terms of global perception and hotel satisfaction, while air connectivity saw the most growth in Oman and Saudi Arabia.

Detailed analysis of key factors impacting the tourism sector include global tourist perception indexes, tourist interest distribution, destination performance by key air connectivity indicators, hotel satisfaction index versus hotel prices, and hotel composition distribution.

Mabrian shared the findings exclusively with Connecting Travel.

Global Tourist Perception Indexes
The report reveals that Oman and the UAE have achieved the highest global perception indexes in the region, demonstrating their ability to provide exceptional experiences to international visitors. Moreover, these countries boast the highest levels of satisfaction with hotel services. Bahrain and the UAE also shine in terms of satisfaction levels with products, indicating their strong competitive edge. The security perception scores for all countries in the region are remarkable, surpassing 90%. This aspect plays a crucial role in promoting tourism and business in the Middle East. Additionally, the perception of climate overall ranks high for all countries.

Tourist Interest Distribution
The report identifies the top-ranking product categories frequently mentioned on social media platforms such as Instagram and Twitter in Saudi Arabia and the UAE. Art and culture emerge as the most discussed categories, fuelled by the presence of historical sites in Saudi Arabia, such as AlUla, Dubai's vibrant cultural programmes, and museum investment in Qatar. 

Food is another hot topic, particularly in Saudi Arabia and Qatar. Bahrain leads the region in wellness mentions, with most of the discussions originating from Saudi Arabia. Oman presents a diverse range of tourist products, catering to a heterogeneous set of preferences, including wellness, nature and an active lifestyle.

Destination Performance by Key Air Connectivity Indicators
The Middle East region has witnessed remarkable progress in terms of inbound seats, with Oman and Saudi Arabia leading the way. Oman has experienced a growth rate of 23.3%, while Saudi Arabia has achieved a growth rate of 15.7% compared to 2022.

Although Saudi Arabia's connectivity still trails behind Dubai's, the country has made significant strides in increasing its connectivity. With efforts to attract 100 million tourists, Saudi Arabia is enhancing its infrastructure, developing new tourist destinations, and increasing the capacity of its airlines. The launch of new airline, Riyadh Aid, in March further strengthened the country's commitment to expanding its air travel capacity.

Hotel Satisfaction Index vs Hotel Prices
According to the report, Qatar ranks highest in terms of satisfaction with three-star hotels, closely followed by Oman. These countries also offer competitive average prices within the region. 

The level of satisfaction with four-star hotels is similar across all countries, with Oman showing a slightly higher level of satisfaction. 

The UAE has the highest average price for five-star hotels but also boasts the highest level of satisfaction in the region. Qatar, Bahrain and Oman demonstrate similar satisfaction levels with the UAE. On a broader scale, the average prices for four- and five-star properties in the Middle East are more appealing compared to popular European destinations.

Hotel Composition Distribution
The UAE demonstrates a well-balanced distribution of hotels across three-, four-, and five-star categories, reflecting its commitment to catering to diverse traveller preferences. Saudi Arabia, meanwhile, is expanding its five-star hotel offerings. Qatar showcases a balanced hotel service composition and possesses the highest percentage of five-star hotels in the region.

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