UAE: OTA Booking.com has released its annual Travel Predictions report for 2024, which includes insights from travellers based in the United Arab Emirates for the first time.
Nearly 28,000 travellers across 33 countries took part in the research. Just over 500 UAE residents of various ages and nationalities were questioned for the first time about their travel preferences and plans for next year.
75 per cent of UAE-based travellers opt for cooler climates when they holiday, and 34 per cent said they will choose an aquatic trip next year. Booking.com expects a growing trend towards water-based activities such as floating yoga, ice therapy and experiencing under-water hotels.
Over 75 per cent of UAE travellers also reported they would choose a hotel based on its sustainability innovation, and 73 per cent would use sustainable travel apps as part of their plans. 81 per cent said that plant-life in green spaces is an important factor when selecting accommodation.
Uninterrupted sleep ranked a main driver for travelling in 2024 (70 per cent), and 75 per cent of respondents said they will use their next vacation to travel solo.
More than 75 per cent are also interested in learning about traditional dishes in foreign countries, and more than 85 per cent of UAE-based travellers want to try indigenous cuisines wherever they go.
In the UAE, 70 per cent of holidaymakers are looking to reduce the cost of their vacation by choosing destinations where day-to-day life is cheaper than in their home city, or travelling shorter distances to avoid the expense of long-haul flights. However, travellers are willing to pay for short-term luxury experiences when they arrive: 62 per cent of UAE-based holidaymakers will pay for a day pass at a five-star resort rather than staying in one.
Carlo Olejniczak, VP and managing director for Booking.com in Europe, Middle East and Africa, said: “The United Arab Emirates’ world-leading infrastructure, global location and superb travel connections make it one of the most convenient countries in the world to travel from and to. We are delighted to include the UAE in our Booking.com Travel Predictions Report for 2024, which reveals fascinating insight into trends, preferences and plans among UAE travellers for the year ahead.
“Our travel predictions reflect the notion that travel is a catalyst to live our best lives – be it through a journey of new discovery, an adventure that supports local environments and communities or a holiday that focuses on health, relaxation and wellbeing – and to sustain those best lives once we get back home to real life.
“UAE travellers are tech-savvy, eco-conscious, adventure-seeking and hungry for new experiences – be it in a foreign land or by exploring different areas of the UAE itself. 2024 looks set to tick all the boxes – and more – on their holiday wish-list,” Olejniczak added.
To download Booking.com’s Travel Predictions 2024, click here.