Abu Dhabi extends fee exemptions for hotels until June 30

The suspension of tourism and municipality charges began in March last year

A view from one of the rooms at the Rixos hotel at Saadiyat Island. Occupancy rates at Abu Dhabi hotels reached 65.4% in February, says consultancy STR. Courtesy Rixos Saadiyat Island 
A view from one of the rooms at the Rixos hotel at Saadiyat Island. Occupancy rates at Abu Dhabi hotels reached 65.4% in February, says consultancy STR. Courtesy Rixos Saadiyat Island 

Abu Dhabi's Department of Culture and Tourism extended exemptions on tourism and municipality fees for hotel operators in the emirate for a further three months to June 30.

The exemption follows directives from the Abu Dhabi Executive Council that form part of a stimulus package providing ongoing support to businesses to help overcome economic challenges caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, DCT Abu Dhabi said in a statement on Wednesday. The fees were first waived in March last year and there have been a number of extensions since.

“This initiative is in line with our vision of sustaining and supporting tourism, especially in the exceptional and urgent circumstances that currently face the sector,” Ali Al Shaiba, executive director of the tourism and marketing sector at DCT Abu Dhabi, said.

“This decision supports partners and stakeholders in revitalising the tourism sector and ensuring that it recovers from the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic, providing hotel and tourism facilities with the opportunity to develop and improve their experiences and products."

The UAE recorded the second-highest occupancy rate in the world after China last year, according to data published on Saturday by the World Tourism Organisation and Emirates Tourism Council .

Average occupancy rates stood at 54.7 per cent last year, with the country's hotels welcoming 14.8 million guests staying for an average of 3.7 nights, the data showed.

Occupancy rates in Abu Dhabi hit 65.4 per cent in February, boosted by the International Defence Exhibition and Conference on February 21-25, consultancy STR Global said last month.

Published: April 14, 2021 04:52 PM

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