Kulwant Singh, CEO and MD, Car Fare and Lama Groups LCC noted that higher incomes and convenience was fuelling the trend of weddings in Dubai. He argued that city’s vast infrastructure and constant focus on enhancing ‘ease of travel’ were acting as catalysts in this interesting development.
What is your take on this outreach by Dubai Tourism? What is your understanding of the Indian market in the luxury space? Given that India continuous to grow at an impressive pace, a deeper foray into luxury could not have been timed better. Is not it?
Indeed, luxury road shows like these provide a crucial platform for interaction with the industry and we are very happy that the Department for Commerce and Marketing of Dubai has taken this initiative of bringing out such a large delegation with a mix of luxury hotels and large DMCs – which are representing Dubai as a luxury destination.
Dubai is a luxury destination, not that it does not cater to masses. It also caters to masses; we are a very mass-focussed destination with a large number of arrivals from the Indian sector. Of course, India is the largest incoming market for Dubai with over 1.6 million visitors each year. But we still feel that there is space for niche clients who are high-spending tourists, who could use Dubai for weddings or as a luxury destination with some of the finest hotels in the world. We have got Versace, Four Seasons, One & Only, Armani; some of the large brands of the world are based out of Dubai. I think it is very important to understand that Dubai has these exquisite and unique services that consumers can avail. So, looking at it from a global perspective, Dubai, certainly, is one of the most important luxury destinations.
You specifically mentioned that Dubai caters to specific niches and to certain extent, it could be its USP. How big is the wedding segment in Dubai? Has the Indian outbound really taken to Dubai as a wedding destination? If yes, why?
Absolutely, yes. Weddings are a huge hit in Dubai. And there are many reasons for this. Dubai has huge hotels with large capacities. We have a huge ground transportation facilities available. Dubai has a very cosmopolitan character. It caters to all nationalities and all kinds of segments. It hardly matters where the families are from; Dubai has such a multicultural outlook that everyone feels comfortable. Beside wedding, Dubai acts a gateway also for clients who focus on niche and high-end products.
Talking specifically about your own venture, how important is India for your business? Is it one of your key source markets?
India remains a very key and focused market for us. It is very important market. Also with enhanced connectivity between India and United Arab Emirates and proximity from India makes it an ideal destination to explore. There are multiple connections and air-connectivity has improved by leaps and bounds.
For Lama Tours, we have a huge focus on the Indian market. We maintain a high year-on-year growth rate, nearly 15-20 percent. So, India surely holds key importance to Lama Tours. We had started our operations in the market about 18-20 years ago, and with our roadshows and continuous interactions with the market, from time to time, we ensure that we remain connected with larger stakeholders, in order to bring more and more visitors into Dubai from Indian shores.