Middle East consumers willing to pay more for sustainable travel

Middle East consumers willing to pay more for sustainable travel

New wave of travellers demands more eco-friendly luxury travel options

One in 10 global travellers stayed in a luxury eco-friendly hotel in the last three years with 61% of UAE residents willing to pay more for sustainable travel experiences, according to new research by YouGov. 

The Global Travel & Tourism White Paper 2023: Luxury Travel Post-Pandemic stated that the trend is especially prevalent among high-income travellers, whose sustainable luxury hotel stays have increased by 50% during the same period.

The UAE topped global rankings in terms of the value placed on travelling, with almost two-thirds (58%) of respondents reporting that travel has become more important to them since the Covid-19 pandemic. 


In terms of luxury travel priorities, a quarter of those living in the UAE are looking for great entertainment, whereas 19% place the biggest emphasis on premium-quality accommodation when booking trips.

The insights have been released on the eve of the Arabian Travel Market 2023, whose theme is 'Working Towards Net Zero’.

Danielle Curtis, exhibition director ME, Arabian Travel Market, said: The Middle East has developed an unparalleled international reputation for luxury tourism, with consumers across the region placing a high value on bespoke, memorable and environmentally responsible experiences. 

“This is especially pertinent given ATM 2023s theme, Working Towards Net Zero. Industry leaders will be showcasing the innovative ways in which they are delivering luxury, sustainable travel experiences across the Gulf and beyond.”

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In addition to sustainable luxury travel, consumers’ appetite for authentic excursions is also on the rise within this segment. Over half (51%) of affluent tourists have sought more meaningful travel experiences since the pandemic, and more than a quarter (27%) are willing to pay extra for secluded villas and chalets. 

The 30th edition of ATM, held at the World Trade Centre, will explore the future of sustainable travel ahead of COP28, which will take place in November 2023 at Expo City Dubai. The conference will also feature a sustainability category at its annual exhibitor awards for the first time. Exhibiting organisations will be recognised based on the extent to which they have considered the environmental impact of their stands, as well as their efforts to reduce their carbon footprint. 

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