Middle East Cruise News

Dubai wins Destination of the Year at Seatrade Cruise Awards

Dubai was awarded Destination of the Year at the 2018 Seatrade Cruise Awards in Lisbon, Portugal, which were held on the side-lines of Seatrade Cruise Med 2018.

The award gives validation to cruise officials’ plans to make Dubai the embarkation port for 1-million cruise passengers by the end of the 2020/21 Arabian Gulf cruise season.


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The city was recognised for its extensive shore excursion options, it’s extremely stable and mild winter climate, and its state-of-the-art cruise infrastructure, such as the Dubai Cruise Terminal.

HE Helal Saeed Almarri - Director General DTCM

Helal Saeed Almarri, director general, Dubai Tourism

“Winning this prestigious award is a true testament to our ongoing efforts to not only bolster the profile of Dubai as a global hub for cruising, but to also raise the awareness of the destination’s overall tourism offerings to a global audience,” said Helal Saeed Almarri, director general, Dubai Tourism.

“Cruise tourism has undoubtedly become a key industry for the Gulf and we are dedicated to educating consumers around the world about the region as the winter cruising destination,” he added.

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With Dubai fast becoming a favoured destination amongst international cruise lines and cruise tourists, the emirate welcomed over 625,000 cruise tourists to the city during the 2016/2017 season.

Looking ahead, Dubai’s cruise industry is set for another strong performance during the upcoming 2018/2019 season, with more than 700,000 cruise tourists expected to visit the city.

And in the 2019/2020 cruise season more than eight cruise lines and nine cruise ships will be homeported in Dubai.

This is in line with Dubai Cruise Tourism’s strategic goal of welcoming one million cruise tourists by the 2020/2021 season, with the emirate serving as the winter home port for 10 of the world’s leading international cruise lines.

The Dubai cruise season runs from November to March each year.

HE Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem, Group Chairman and Chief Executive Officer,...

Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem, Group Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, DP World

“The Seatrade ‘Destination of the Year’ Award recognises Dubai’s position as the region’s leader in cruise tourism with its world class facilities and tourist attractions,” said Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem, Group Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, DP World.

DP World is the operator and owner of Port Rashid and the Dubai Cruise Terminal, which is located within it.

“Our state-of-the-art Hamdan bin Mohammed Cruise Terminal at Mina Rashid, set to be the largest facility in the world, is equipped to meet the growing number of cruise passengers and is capable of handling 18,000 passengers a day,” he added.

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