The Top European Destinations for the Middle Eastern Traveler

Introduction

What are the top European Destinations for the Middle Eastern Traveler? Slowly, the world of travel and tourism starts to return to a semblance of normality. Holidays are something to be considered rather than feared. However, the destination selection criteria have changed somewhat. Gone are the arbitrary selections based purely on needs and wants, now travellers must consider the practicality of travel. Middle Eastern travellers remain the most sought after subset of international travellers due to their longer than average duration of stay and significantly higher average spend. So what are the top European destinations for Middle Eastern travellers as we enter into the winter period?

Selection Criteria For The Middle Eastern Traveler

The primary selection criteria for top European destinations for the Middle Eastern Traveler here is where an Emirate in the UAE, Saudi Arabia or Qatar has a travel corridor with each country or is on their respective green lists. A travel corridor is essentially a preferential air bridge where travellers to and from destinations needn’t quarantine on arrival or upon return.  

Germany & Austria

It may appear foolhardy to lump these 2 destinations together, but as they share such a huge land border that is easily crossed by car, if you’re visiting one you may as well visit both. Who knows what 2022 holds?! Austria is a picture-perfect, holiday postcard, hallmark moment photographers dream. With rolling hills, picturesque scenery, and traditional villages and hotels, Austria really does have a lot to offer those seeking solitude from the hustle and bustle of modern city life. Germany on the other hand has it all. From skiing to nightclubs, massive cities, to tiny villages, traditional to modern. Germany can rightly be considered as multiple destinations at once. This offers a unique opportunity to the Middle Eastern Traveller, who is used to having 3, 4 or even 5 holidays per year, Germany could potentially satisfy all of those destination needs in a single visit. 

Spain

Winter, Summer, Spring or Autumn, Spain remains an extraordinary tourism destination. Especially the Costa Del Sol which boasts some of the most beautiful beaches, hotels and restaurants on the entire continent. For Middle Eastern travellers in particular Spain is a home away from home. Hospitable, Muslim friendly, and with an almost endless array of things to do and see, expect Spain to be high on the list of must-visit places this winter for Middle Eastern Travellers. Those that are visiting should definitely consider The Puente Romano luxury 5-star hotel in Marbella, which is sure to wow any visitor.  

Italy

In the Winter Italy is a country of 2 halves. Mountainous, snowy and downright cold in the north with tremendous skiing facilities in the Dolomites and Aosta Valley. Then the warm, sumptuous, luxurious south with beautiful villages and architecture. In particular, Lecce and Naples are holidaymakers dreams at this time of year. 

Malta

For those who have never visited, Malta appears to be an entire island carved out of a single block of granite. Hilly villages with picturesque cottages sliding down towards the warm mediterranean sea, Malta is still a relatively untouched gem for the Middle Eastern Traveller. For the explorer, couple, shopper or family, Malta has an experience for everyone. 

Covid Precautions for the Middle Eastern Traveler

All destinations are undertaking covid precautions, some more strict than others. Critically for destinations looking to attract Middle Eastern tourist is to ensure that Covid precautions are unobtrusive and where necessary gender-segregated. All destinations require you to have a vaccine, and as the rules continue to change around which vaccines, which boosters and how long ago your vaccine was taken continue to change, be sure to check with your travel agent on the latest requirements before you travel. 

Gulf Reps

Gulf Reps is the leading travel and tourism representation company in the Middle East. With over 60 years of regional and industry experience. Gulf Reps has served clients on six continents delivering transformative results to everyone from hoteliers to tourism boards. Our mix of world-class marketing expertise, PR specialists, unparalleled connections and relationships and eclectic mix of marketing channels makes working with Gulf Reps the only sure way to drive Middle Eastern tourists to your destination.

What is a travel representation company?

We’re often asked what is a travel representation company? Travel representation companies function as an adjunction between travel agencies and destination(s), airlines and hotel boards driving up conversion rates and generating profitable sales. With a focus on b2b transactions in regional and global markets, they increase the physical and online exposure of travel and tourism operators through a number of means and strategies.

To name a few, travel representation agencies develop and implement marketing strategies that ensure maximum reach to the targeted audience via various marketing channels including digital marketing, e-newsletter, social media platforms and online campaigns. Travel representation companies also attend, organize and manage events that function as valuable links between industry key actors.

Travel representation establishes and fosters relationships with managing partners, oversee account management activities as well as business development, PR support and strategic planning. Additional activities include providing financial reports, KPI monthly reports, media reports and other ancillary documents.

By implementing these methods via adherence to best-practice and innovative ideas, travel representation agents connect key players in the industry with clients to ensure the quality of service and a satisfying experience.

What to look for when selecting a travel representation company?

Several factors come into play when partnering with a travel representation company. Achieving substantial reach and intensifying brand awareness is contingent on a comprehensive understanding of the product, strong knowledge of the market and accurate and effective segmentation.  

The right travel representation agent will act as the face of your company and speak for its interest and objectives while effectively communicating with the involved parties.

Travel representation needs to possess robust market intelligence as deep background and connections in order to build and implement functional strategies that can be studied and evaluated through action plans. 

Travel representation companies need to hold fast to a set of core values including transparency, self-drive and persistence.

Travel representation companies can be evaluated against a number of criteria:

  • Excellent communication skills
  • Speed to market
  • All-round market experience 
  • Good connections
  • Cost-effectiveness
  • Reputable work portfolio with good quality hotels and SMCs
  • Flexibility and simplicity 
  • Personalised services and adeptness in individualized strategies and boutique marketing 

What values does a travel representation company add to travel and tourism in the middle east?

The unprecedented thrive the middle east has witnessed during the last two years, partially due to covid-19, in various industrial sectors including travel and tourism placed the region as a second-best performer in travel and tourism showing an annual growth rate of 5.3% in 2019. This growth led to many prospects for representation companies.

Travel representation firms can leverage the emergent megacities, large population and the top-tier tourist service infrastructures to bring substantial value to the region exhibited in the growing awareness of the middle east as a sought travel destination and the increasing influx of tourists from key markets such as China and India.

Furthermore, travel representation agencies help expedite the recovery of the region and restore the pre-covid tourist spend in the middle east. 

Travel representation significantly contributed to renowned airlines like Emirates, Qatar Airways and Etihad Airways whereby ranking them on top of the world’s best-performing airlines list in terms of quality of service 

What can Gulf Reps add?

Gulf Reps is a leading and highly regarded travel representation company with far-reaching and extensive experience in the Gulf region and the middle east. Gulf Reps provides a state of the art portfolio of PR and consultancy services as well as strategic and result-driven marketing solutions tailored to deliver individual targets, exceptional outcomes that boost and enhance your presence in the region. Contact us on Tel: +971 (0)4 316 6333, F:+971 (0)4 316 6565, E: sammy@gulfreps.com for any inquiries.