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UAE Residents Face Sticker Shock for National Day Getaways

As UAE residents prepare for an unexpected extra day off during the extended UAE National Day weekend.

As UAE residents gear up for the surprise additional day off during the extended UAE National Day weekend, those looking to seize the opportunity for a quick getaway face hefty price tags for flights and hotel stays. 

Airfares to popular destinations during the holidays have surged by almost 300%, prompting travelers to dig deep into their pockets for the coveted break.

Flight Frenzy: Price Peaks and Popular Destinations:

  1. Flights to Armenia and Georgia: One-way tickets start at Dh529 during the holidays, compared to Dh120 to Dh160.
  2. India Bound: Travelers flying to Mumbai may spend about Dh745, while Bangalore flights are priced at Dh1,200, a substantial increase from average rates in January (Dh391 and Dh504, respectively).
  3. Pakistan’s Karachi: Direct flights commence at Dh455, reflecting a surge from the usual Dh335 in January.
  4. London Calling: A trip to London could set travelers back by Dh1,659, compared to the January rate of Dh1,200.
  5. Istanbul Travels: Flights to Istanbul start at Dh456, contrasting with Dh330 in January.

Booking Strategies and Staycation Trends:

  1. Flight Variability: Experts note that airfares can change rapidly, with travelers often holding bookings for a few hours to secure favorable rates.
  2. Staycation Demand: High demand for staycations has caused prices to spike, with five-star properties charging up to Dh2,300 for a two-night stay during the National Day holiday, compared to regular rates starting at Dh1,200.

Insights from Travel Experts:

  1. Subair Thekepurathvalappil (Senior Manager, Inbound and Outbound Operations, Regal Tours Worldwide): Long weekends witness significant travel demand among UAE residents.
  2. Geoffrey Salatan (President and CEO, Geoffrey Travels): Travelers hold bookings for a few hours to lock in favorable airfare, as prices may vary rapidly.
  3. Shilpa Mahtani (CBO, name Holiday Homes): Unprecedented demand for staycations impacts accommodation offerings, with notable price increases for 1-bedroom and 2-bedroom units.

As the excitement for the extended National Day weekend intensifies, travelers face the challenge of navigating surging prices in their quest for a memorable getaway.

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