January 17, 2011 – Going to Dubai can be confusing, because it is very hard to spot the ‘Dubaian’.
What you see very clearly are Indians, Africans, Europeans and Arabs – either of whom could be a native of Dubai.
The extreme cosmopolitan nature of this vast emirate is what makes it perfect for offering things that people from all walks of life, would love. In this case, it’s shopping.
For 32 days, starting this Thursday, the Arab emirate will be holding the 15th edition of the Dubai Shopping Festival (DSF), a shopping fiesta that will see massive discounts offered on international brands and the involvement of several hotels and airlines offering deals – even for Kenyans.
Emirates Airline Regional Manager for East Africa Essa Sulaiman Ahmad, said the airline has negotiated for accommodation for Kenyan businessmen and leisure seekers attending the DSF with major beach and city hotels for as little as $55 a night.
In a statement, Ahmad said the hotels will offer one free night to travellers who book a four-night stay.
“We believe these negotiated rates will provide incentives to Kenyan travellers and businessmen to attend this year’s Dubai Shopping Festival. We are also giving bonus nights for longer stays, for example we are giving eight-nights for the price of six-nights, 12 nights for the price of nine and 16 for the price of 12,” he said.
“The accommodation packages are open to Emirates passengers on all classes of travel with a choice of accommodation suitable to each class of travel,” he added.
The package also includes an Arabian Adventures welcome pack, airport transfers to/from the hotel by private car, breakfast daily and all taxes and service charges.
And for those who are concerned about paying for extra baggage, Emirates has offered additional baggage allowance in all its classes.
Launched in 1996, DSF was intended to stimulate its economy and boost tourism numbers. I guess it worked. In 2007, according to Wikipedia, Dubai was the 8th most visited city in the world.