In the UAE, spendings of Russian tourists are close to the volume of trade between two countries
During a visit to Abu Dhabi on October 15, Russian President Vladimir Putin compared the UAE's income from Russian tourists with the trade between two countries. According to him, the UAE is a popular destination among Russians, last year the increase in tourist flow amounted to 23%. He also cited estimates of the Central Bank of the Russian Federation, according to which Russian citizens "spent more than $ 1,3 billion in the Emirates, which is comparable to the volume of bilateral trade."
Dmitry Arutyunov, CEO of the company Art Tour, agrees with these figures. “About 600-700 thousand Russian tourists visit the UAE, and spend there on average $2 000 per person. Totally, it is about $ 1,3 billion,” he explained.
The flow of tourists, thanks primarily to the expansion of air transportation and the facilitation of visa regime between the countries, is growing much more actively - the average dynamics in recent years is at least 30%.
According to the Department of Tourism and Commerce of Dubai, in 2018 the flow from Russia to the Emirate grew by 28% and reached 678 000 people. It is the sixth position in the number of tourists. Other emirates also show good dynamics: flow to Sharjah increased by 74%, and to Ras al-Khaimah almost doubled. High growth rates continue in 2019. According to the Arab media, two countries also agreed to further increase the volume of air transportation. Russia and the UAE signed a preliminary agreement, and plan to hold the next round of negotiations in St. Petersburg in the first half of next year. Representatives of the main national carriers of the UAE, including Emirates, Etihad Airways, Air Arabia and flydubai, attended the talks in Abu Dhabi. The United Arab Emirates are widely presented on the Russian routes. In total, now 111 flights a week connect Russia and the UAE.