At an event hosted by STB and Singapore Airlines recently, GB Srithar, Regional Director, India, Middle East, South Asia & Africa, Singapore Tourism Board shared that the footfall of international visitors from UAE in 2022 had their expectations.
GB Srithar, Regional Director, India, Middle East, South Asia & Africa, Singapore Tourism Board shared, “I am happy to say that Singapore tourism board remains engaged in this market. Singapore international visitor numbers reached 6.3 million in 2022, which is 33 per cent of 2019, exceeding our own forecast of last year, which was between 4 to 6million. So at 6.3 million we have exceeded our expectations. On a rough estimate, Tourism receipts have reached US$ 13.8 to 14.3 billion reflecting a rise of 50 to 90 per cent of 2019 TR. Looking at the Middle East market and GCC countries, we welcomed 79,630, which is about 61 per cent of 2019’s IVA and UAE specifically from where we welcomed 42,970 visitors—about 35 per cent of 2019 IVA—and July and August last year registered international traveler footfall and the average length of stay was about three to five days. In terms of importance of the market, United Arrab Emirates (UAE) is our number one source market in the region.”
He reiterated, “We continue to welcome visitors from the Middle East; the good thing is that Singapore is very much open, it is quarantine-free and you can come to the country and move around freely in various places like in Dubai. My overlapping message is that Singapore is not only welcoming leisure travellers, as Singapore continues to be a family holiday destination, the Middle East travellers when they come to Singapore learn that it is very easy to enjoy in terms of experiences and it is a different kind of feel. With the diverse culture Singapore has there is much to be enjoyed by the visitors and lots of places have been spruced up. It is not only the big attractions in the past, but more are coming up soon to provide those diverse experiences. What we have noticed during this post COVID travellers look for authentic experiences from the destination.”
Renjie Wong, Area Director, India, Middle East & South Asia said, “Singapore is constantly changing and opening the Museum of ice cream in Singapore, the first outside of the United States of America (USA) is now a tourist attraction, which opened during the middle of the pandemic. It is an exhibit-based attraction set in one of the most historical places in Singapore Dempsey Hill, it is one of the examples which puts Singapore in the map. The only Avatar experience in the world is at the Cloud forest in Gardens by the Bay Singapore.”
Aswin K, General Manager Singapore Airlines, reaffirmed, “As you know last year has been an exciting year for all of us. Srithar was mentioning about the in-visitor arrivals and I am happy to share that Singapore Airlines had a major play in that as well as we have been really active in this space and we have been increasing the capacity a lot, so as back of December 2022, we are back at 75 per cent as you know China was a major market for us and within the next few months we hope to register an increase.”