Dubai expects over 200,000 cruise tourists for 2007-2008 season


(TVLW) – Dubai welcomed six cruise ships at its state-of-the-art cruise terminal since the start of cruise season in October.

Awadh Seghayer Al Ketbi, Executive Director for Heritage and Cruise at the Dubai Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DTCM) said the cruise tourism season had a good start and several cruise ships from various parts of the world are expected to visit the emirate until the end of the season in April.

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The ship-shaped cruise terminal, opened in 2001, measures 3300 square metres and is able to accommodate two ships simultaneously on a 335-metre quay The Dubai Cruise Terminal is the world’s first to receive ISO-9002 certification and also the world’s only cruise facility run by the government tourism body, DTCM. The Dubai cruise terminal is able to accommodate two ships simultaneously.

It stands out on account of its futuristic ‘mobile’ design; facilities include a VIP lounge, café, palm gardens, duty free shops, Internet corner, giant video screen and meeting room.

DTCM signed an agreement with cruise operator Costa Crociere. The agreement marks the creation of a full-fledged partnership between Costa Crociere and Dubai, providing for joint marketing initiatives in the next five years promoting both brands worldwide.

During the current winter season 2007-2008, Dubai expects more than 200,000 cruise passengers to visit the emirate, giving a big boost to the booming tourism industry.

Mr. Al Ketbi said: ‘Dubai is becoming a popular cruise destination in the world. The arrival of cruise ships speaks volumes about the status that Dubai enjoys on the world cruise tourism map.’

Dubai handled 32,000 cruise passenger movements in 2006, up from 23,000 cruise passengers in the previous year. For the 2006-2007, season, Dubai is expected to play host to over 85,000 passengers. For the 2008 season, the number is expected to reach over 200,000.