Dubai Tourism promotes VFR market through contest
Dubai Tourism is uniting families across the globe and demonstrating the importance of the Visiting Friends and Relatives (VFR) market to the Emirate. Two Indians, Ravinder Singh from Amristar, Punjab, assistant restaurant manager ( Antique Bazaar) Four Points By Sheraton Bur Dubai and Hanif Kalamata, front office manager, Ramada Hotel Dubai from Mangalore are two winners of this special contest, which included 11 other winners.
Part of the wider #MyDubai initiative, Dubai’s Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (Dubai Tourism) ran an exclusive hotel competition in 2014. The competition, spread over a period of three weeks, invited employees of each participating hotel to post images or videos that best defined their #MyDubai experience with one winner selected from each hotel. The 11 finalists each won an all-expenses paid trip to Dubai for two members of their families to experience the city with them.
Dubai Tourism and 11 participating hotels are hosting families from India, China, Australia, the UK, Dominican Republic, the Philippines, Venezuela, Thailand and Portugal after their family member won the #MyDubai Hotel Edition competition by sharing their individual #MyDubaistories, moments and experiences on Instagram.
Aside from enjoying four nights in the hotel at which their respective family member works, the visitors have been offered various experiences including hot air ballooning with Ballooning Adventures Emirates, a cultural experience at Sheikh Mohammed Cultural Centre of Understanding (SMCCU) including an Abra ride, a tour of Deira and the Spice and Gold Souks and a Desert Safari experience with Platinum Heritage. Several personalised activities have also been included for family groups including visits to the Butterfly Garden; Bounce – Dubai’s largest trampoline playground; Spa treatments; culinary experiences at Top Chef; Sky Diving in the desert; and a styling session with a stylist at The Dubai Mall.
Issam Kazim, chief executive officer, Dubai Corporation for Tourism and Commerce Marketing said, “We launched this competition at Dubai Tourism’s first quarterly ‘Hotels PR and Communications Forum’ in September 2014with the aim of encouraging hotels to engage their staff to share their stories and highlight the VFR market of Dubai as a whole. The winners of our competition are from nine different countries which is quite a diverse mix but this reflects the fact that there are more than200 nationalities uniting and living in Dubai and the hospitality industry is a reflection of the diversity found within Dubai. As the project comes into full fruition, we will continue to highlight how important the Visiting Friends and Relatives (VFR) market is to Dubai Tourism and the industry as a whole but we will also continue to recognise the hard work of all the employees of hotels who dedicate themselves to creating an enjoyable experience for all guests, from all over the world including UAE residents. Many of our winners hadn’t seen their families for quite some time, several hadn’t ever seen where their son or daughter worked nor visited Dubai.”
The participating hotels are The H Dubai; Media One Hotel; Kempinski Dubai – Mall of the Emirates; Anantara Dubai The Palm Resort and Spa; Sheraton Dubai Mall of the Emirates Hotel; Mövenpick Ibn Batutta Gate Hotel; Four Points by Sheraton– Bur Dubai; Ramada Dubai– Bur Dubai; Manzil Downtown Dubai Hotel; Holiday Inn Express Jumeirah; and InterContinental Hotel Dubai Festival City.