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With increased frequency on Dubai route, Uganda Airlines will increase tourism numbers from UAE, gulf

The decision by Uganda’s National carrier, Uganda Airlines, to increase its frequency between Dubai and Entebbe is poised to facilitate ongoing efforts by the country’s tourism authorities geared towards attracting visitors from the United Arab Emirates and other Middle Eastern countries.
Recently, Uganda Airlines announced that it would increase its frequency on this route from the current four flights a week to seven, a move tourism authorities in the country believe will boast a long term desire to make the region a new tourist source market for Uganda.
According to the Uganda Tourism Board (UTB) marketing manager Ms Claire Mugabi, UAE is one of the priority source markets that UTB has been targeting for tourism and investment and the move by Uganda Airlines to increase its flights on this route is much welcome.
“An increase in the frequency of flights from Dubai will significantly enhance tourist convenience to access Destination Uganda which will in turn spur tourism growth. UAE and Dubai in particular, is a meeting point of all world cultures and businesses making it an attractive market to tap into for tourism arrivals of not only the resident locals and expatriates living and working in the UAE but also the visiting masses of people that travel to Dubai from across the world,” she said.
Already, Uganda Airlines and UTB have in place a three year memorandum of understanding to combine efforts to promote the tourism potential of the country. The MOU requires the two entities to share a responsibility in developing the tourism industry by promoting it as a favored destination, its people, culture, environment and attractions.
Uganda Airlines promotes destination Uganda on its numerous platforms, online, in-flight and on the ground at its sales offices in cities and airports across the world with Brand Destination Uganda messages.
UTB through their respective tourism promotional campaigns and platforms presents Uganda Airlines as the most convenient way to travel to Uganda. This includes promotional materials, online platforms including website, social media platforms as well as other multimedia and experiential campaigns.
The Dubai route was Uganda Airlines first long-haul route outside Africa and is currently one of the best performing.
According to Ms Shakila Rahim Lamar, the corporate Affairs and Public Relations Manager at the airline, performance on the Dubai route has been on an upward trajectory since its launch five months ago.
“The passenger rate of travel has spiked since the reopening of the economy and it coincided with the closure of the Dubai expo as well as the festive season. We are confident that we shall hit our half year target,” she told the media recently.
She added that the airline was working with embassies, partners and agents abroad to push for it as the choice for tourists visiting Uganda.
The increase in the frequency will make the airline the busiest on the route ahead of Emirates Airlines which operates 5 times a week. Other airlines on the route are Flydubai and Air Arabia which flies to Sharjah, UAE.
On 30th March 2022, Uganda launched its new destination brand Explore Uganda, The Pearl of Africa, as part of efforts to break through the Dubai market.
Tourism minister, Tom Butiime said that through continuous promotional efforts in the region and participation in Expo 2020 Dubai over the last six months, the country had built necessary networks and offerings to ensure it is positioned as a top holiday destination for travelers from the UAE and GCC and that the availability of direct flights, which Uganda Airlines now offers makes it even easier.
“Uganda is extremely excited to launch its revitalized brand and travel offering to the world, and we are thrilled to do that here in Dubai, where the UAE and surrounding Gulf States are an emerging tourism source market for Uganda,” he said.
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