RIYADH, SAUDI ARABIA, March 9, 2024 / — Saudi tourism celebrated one of the most successful travel trade shows in its history at ITB Berlin this week celebrating Saudi’s milestone achievement of welcoming over 100 million tourists in 2023 and securing major new trade partnerships as the sector continues its remarkable growth.

Building on the success of the ITB Berlin 2023 edition, the Saudi Tourism Authority (STA) secured more than 15 agreements, including major partnerships with Group, Flynas and Eurowings as well as new collaboration with Visit Bahrain, Visit Oman and Qatar Tourism. These actions are set to boost Saudi’s tourism sector, propelling it towards unprecedented sustainable growth and further solidifying the kingdom’s position as a leading global tourism destination.

Minister of Tourism and Chairman of Saudi Tourism Authority, His Excellency Ahmed bin Aqeel Al-Khatib, praised Saudi Arabia’s successful participation in this year’s ITB.

He said: “The 2024 Saudi pavilion showcased the bright future of tourism in our country in line with Saudi Vision 2030, along with the growth and evolution of Saudi’s tourism sector.

“Our participation in ITB has had a positive impact on enhancing Saudi’s position on the global tourism map – strengthening relationships and cooperation with key international partners and catalyzing joint work to achieve global sustainability in tourism.”

Fahd Hamidaddin CEO and Board Member of the Saudi Tourism Authority (STA):

“Saudi’s participation in ITB Berlin has been one of the most successful in our history and will help turbocharge the remarkable growth our thriving tourism sector has already seen.

“With more than 55 partners from the tourism ecosystem attending the show, we secured more than 15 new agreements that will increase our connectivity and ensure the world is aware of our dynamic and diverse destinations.

“Saudi’s growth so far is just the start of our story, a story which will be built on for years to come.”

During ITB, STA and Group unveiled a major partnership aimed at attracting 350,000 additional tourists to Saudi over the next year. This collaboration, STA’s largest global partnership to date, leverages Group’s extensive network and technological expertise to promote Saudi’s unique tourism offerings to a worldwide audience.

In a strategic move, STA joined forces with Flynas to launch a campaign aimed at boosting international visits to Saudi. The partnership will see a new Flynas route between Jeddah and Berlin launching from from 1 September 2024, with three flights per week – aiming to significantly increase passenger capacity and enhance access to Saudi’s rich cultural and historical treasures.

In another agreement aiming to enhance air travel connections between Germany and Saudi, the Saudi Air Connectivity Program and Eurowings signed an agreement to launch two direct routes connecting Cologne and Berlin to Jeddah, with the goal of beginning operations in October 2024.

Expanding its collaborative efforts across the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), STA announced further collaboration with Visit Bahrain, Visit Oman, and Qatar Tourism which will see new promotional campaigns designed to attract new international tourists to the region. These innovative campaigns, designed to showcase the diverse cultural, historical, and natural landscapes of the GCC countries, offer international visitors a seamless experience exploring the rich heritage and modern marvels of Saudi and its neighboring states.

The Saudi delegation of more than 55 representatives was led by His Excellency Ahmed Al Khateeb, Minister of Tourism and Chairman of STA accompanied by Her Highness Princess Haifa bint Muhammad, the Vice Minister of Tourism, STA leadership, wider Saudi tourism ecosystem leaders and key partners including destination management companies, hotels, and airlines.

Over the course of the event, more than 14,000 people interacted with the Saudi stand which saw a record number of Saudi partners showcasing hundreds of bookable products for partners in destinations such as Jeddah, AlUla, and the Red Sea.

To mark the milestone of welcoming more than 100 million tourists in 2023, His Excellency Ahmed Al-Khateeb hosted a celebratory reception convening global tourism leaders on the sidelines of ITB to showcase the remarkable growth and development of Saudi’s tourism sector. The event brought together leaders from the global travel industry and distinguished guests and further highlighted the exceptional collaborative opportunities that await exploration in the heart of Arabia.

Saudi Tourism Authority is grateful to all its partners who helped to deliver a successful showcase at ITB Berlin 2024 and looks forward with optimism to meeting its targets, as well as participating at the Arabian Travel Market in Dubai from 6-9 May 2024.

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