The report emphasized that this growth is driven by the increased demand by residents of the Gulf Cooperation Council countries who wish to spend holidays and visit the Kingdom for a short period, as well as the desire of businessmen who visit the Kingdom to extend their stay there and explore growing tourism offers or attend one of the events Sports, cultural events or festivals.
Daniel Curtis, Director of the Arab Travel Market Expo in the Middle East said: “As Saudi Arabia continues to work according to its plans to reduce dependence on oil, the number of visitors and tourists coming to the Kingdom has become a strong tributary of the economic diversification process witnessed in the country, and we have noticed our role This growth is directly attributable to the increase in the total number of Saudi companies exhibiting at the Arab Travel Market exhibition by 45% on an annual basis between 2018 and 2019. ”
“With its larger goal of receiving 100 million tourists from abroad by 2030, the kingdom is striving to become more than a religious destination that attracts Muslims from around the world or a business destination as one of the richest countries in the world, but rather it is working to become An international tourist destination with its rich ingredients, such as beautiful landscapes and various offers. “In line with this growth in the tourism sector in the Kingdom, some regional and international hotel brands have renewed their interest in expanding further into the Saudi market.”
In this context, and according to figures issued by STR Research Company, it is expected that 79,864 hotel rooms will be added to the Kingdom’s current hotel inventory by 2025, the majority in Makkah Al-Mukarramah with 34,270 hotel rooms, followed by Jeddah and Riyadh with 14,525 and 11, 632 new rooms in a row, In light of this, the capital Riyadh witnessed strong growth in 2019, which was reflected in the increase in revenues according to available rooms by 5.2% and an increase in the hotel occupancy rate by 9.2%, with an average daily room rate of -3.6%.
In the fourth quarter, the revenue, according to the hotel rooms available, reached SAR 529.33, the highest since 2014.
Curtis added, “While the increased supply may impose more competition on the performance of hotels across Saudi Arabia, the expected growth in visitor numbers over the next four years is expected to increase occupancy levels during 2020 and the years that follow.”
After the issuance of the new tourist visa law, which allows visitors from 49 countries to apply for an electronic visa or visa on arrival, the Kingdom has developed a two-stage tourism strategy in line with Vision 2030.
The first phase, which will run between 2019 and 2022, will focus on attracting visitors who come to Saudi Arabia for the first time to discover its virgin beaches, deserts, mountains and heritage sites such as Diriyah, as well as a busy schedule of activities, sporting events, and cultural and recreational events. While the second phase, which begins in 2022, will target the full development of giant projects such as the NEOM project and the Red Sea project.
On the foreign tourism front, the foreign tourism market in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is expected to reach more than 43 billion US dollars by 2025, according to the latest data released by the research company, Renob.