The demand for holiday packages during Eid Al Adha has witnessed a massive surge among UAE residents. Many are combining trips and travelling to two countries, taking advantage of the overlap between the Eid holidays and the school summer break this year.

UAE residents will likely have a six-day holiday, the longest break of the year, on the occasion of the Feast of Sacrifice. Based on astronomical calculations, the Eid holidays are likely to be from Tuesday, June 27, to Friday, June 30. Add the Saturday-Sunday weekend and it becomes a six-day break.

According to online travel agency, demand for group tours and holiday packages has risen by 47 per cent for Eid Al Adha as compared to Eid Al Fitr and 37 per cent higher than last year’s Eid Adha.

Mir Wasim Raja, manager for MICE and holidays at Galadari Brothers International Travel Services (ITS), said demand for travel for Eid Al Adha is exceptionally strong to the UK, Russia, Georgia, Armenia, and Azerbaijan because it is easier to get visas to these destinations.

“Most of the demand is for the UK because there is no visa issue. But visa appointment is still a challenge to other European and Schengen destinations,” he said.

Raja added that strong demand will continue in the coming weeks as well, but he asked residents to book early to avoid exorbitant rates for late bookings.

“If residents book one month or more in advance, they can save a good amount of money on air tickets and spend the same money on leisure trips and other experiences,” said the ITS manager.

Leisure travel
Raja added that bookings are going strong for both Eid Al Adha and summer breaks.

Musafir said around 50 per cent of UAE residents are focusing on leisure holidays, while 25 per cent are considering combining leisure travels with a visit to their home country, and 25 per cent will be visiting their home countries.

“Many individuals are also opting for two breaks – a short one for the upcoming Eid Al-Adha breaks at the end of June, followed by a longer one in July or August,” it said.

Based on bookings at Musafir, the UAE residents prefer to visit destinations that are visa-free such as Kenya, Thailand, Singapore, and countries in the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) like Azerbaijan, Armenia, Georgia, Kazakhstan, and Kyrgyzstan.

In addition, UAE travellers are combining destinations like Singapore-Malaysia, Bangkok-Pattaya, Switzerland-Paris or Italy, and Georgia-Armenia or Azerbaijan.

“There is a significant increase in travel inquiries for European countries, with an expected 30 per cent of leisure travellers heading to Europe. Switzerland, France, Italy, Spain, Croatia, and Balkan countries are the most preferred destinations while CIS countries continue to be the highest in demand with their proximity, connectivity and visa-friendly policies, making it enticing for travellers from the UAE,” said Raheesh Babu, COO of

While Saudi Arabia, Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan, Nepal, Egypt, Krabi, Trabzon, and Eastern Europe are the new emerging destinations for UAE residents for holidays.