The emirate of Dubai is turning into a major cruise tourism hub. During the current season 2016-2017 which started in October and will continue until April, Dubai is to receive 157 cruise ships.
This means a 16% increase compared to last season which received 134 cruise ships, according to Sultan Ahmed bin Sulayem, Group Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of DP World.
"It is expected that Rashid Port will receive 650,000 cruise tourists which means a 30% increase over the same period of last year."
The strategic plan to attract a million cruise tourists by 2020 is on track following a clear road map, he added.
"His Highness Shaikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai is closely following up on this to make sure Dubai and the UAE become a regional and international hub for cruise tourism."
Thanks to His Highness's vision, Dubai goes the extra mile to be a top tourist destination, he pointed out.
"Next year, work will start to connect cruise terminal 2 and 3 with a 465m bridge and the number of quays will be increased."
The current quays will be expanded and an additional terminal will be built for more capacity to accommodate the increasing number of cruise ships, bin Sulayem stated.
Mohammed Al Mannaei, Director, Mina (port) Rashid said the UAE has all potentials to be the top cruise destination, and this is our target in the next few years.
"The port can receive seven cruise ships simultaneously on a 1900m quay and capacity of 18,000 tourists through terminals 2 and 3. Cruise Terminal 3 is the biggest of its type worldwide with a capacity of 14,000 passengers and 125,000m2 of area."