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Tourism 101: subsidy for residents

Tourism 101: subsidy for residents

Kipp offers a brilliant plan: subsidy of tourist landmark entry fees in the UAE

April 19, 2011 2:05 by



Kipp’s got family coming over a visit next month. And the first thing on our list is to make a week’s worth itinerary, working out the when, where and how much of playing tourist guide to some first timers to the city.

We’re pretty sure you’ve been through the very same thing before. The main highlights of those days are probably running like slideshow in your mind: Madinat Jumeirah, Burj Khalifa, the Spice Souq, Bastakiya, Ski Dubai, The Grand Mosque, Jumeirah Beach, etc, etc.

Speaking to a colleague about going up the Burj Khalifa towers with the family, Kipp finds out that they’ve been up the observation desk three times already, each time with a different vacationing family member or friend.

So each time, he’s had to pay 100AED for himself, during times when they could book in advance, and 400AED/person for immediate entry admission.

Kipp’s been to the 124th floor once and just for our own viewing pleasure. No shutterbug visitors or family members to impress. Frankly, the thought of paying the same price something I’ve seen before doesn’t sound too appealing.

Sure, we might be able to get away with booking tickets for relatives to go up there by themselves, but honestly that’s not the way Kipp rolls when it comes to hospitality. It’s just different when we are able to give them the resident’s perspective on things—like their own personal tour guide.

This got us thinking: why not subsidise tickets for UAE residents? They can do this for all tourist attractions, in fact, although the Burj Khalifa is pretty much the one that comes most to Kipp’s mind.

In Kipp’s travels, we remember visiting landmarks which charged the full entry price for tourists and half-price for residents—and in some cases, even letting locals in for free. Checks and balances could be made with just a flash of their National ID or labour card to show that they are worthy of the discount.

This not only encourages residents to play tourist guides (encouraging more visitors to come to the region) but it also incentivises residents to keep visiting these landmarks on their own.

Maybe it’s just good for Burj Khalifa and not any other landmarks around town, most of which are already at a fair price. But one thing’s for sure, if the Burj Khalifa management are contemplating such a change, can you make sure to implement it within the month? So Kipp can enjoy our rewards…



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