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Royal wedding weekend brings boost to tourism sector

By Rayya Al Muheisen - Jun 03,2023 - Last updated at Jun 04,2023

A view of tents for visitors in Wadi Rum, part of ‘the Golden Triangle’ of tourist attractions in Jordan, 328km south of Amman, in this recent photo (Photo courtesy of Shiyas Abdulrazak)

AMMAN — Jordan’s local tourism flourished over the long weekend celebrating the Royal wedding of HRH Crown Prince Hussein, with hotel occupancy rates soaring and popular attractions filled with visitors, leaving industry stakeholders and locals delighted.

Both local and foreign tourists seized the opportunity to explore the rich cultural heritage and natural wonders that Jordan has to offer. 

Hussein Helalat, Jordan Hotel Association’s (JHA) spokesperson, told The Jordan Times that Amman saw a significant increase in hotel reservations, primarily due to the influx of wedding guests. 

“Numerous renowned hotels reported full occupancy during the long weekend, accommodating a multitude of guests attending the grand Royal celebration,” Helalat said. 

While Amman attracted wedding attendees, other key destinations such as Petra and Wadi Rum became magnets for foreign tourists, Helalat added. 

Local travel guide Mahmoud Baho told The Jordan Times that Petra witnessed a surge in visitors, aided in part by the free tickets offered to Jordanians in celebration of the Crown Prince’s wedding.

“Tourists from various corners of the globe flocked to Petra, awestruck by its breathtaking architecture and captivating history,” Baho added. 

Wadi Rum also experienced a surge in tourist arrivals, according to Baho. 

Meanwhile, the coastal city of Aqaba and the Dead Sea witnessed a blend of domestic and international tourists, Helalat said. 

“Almost 50 per cent of visitors were locals who flocked to these destinations to enjoy a relaxing getaway,” Helalat added.

Local businesses and communities noted the positive economic impact of the long weekend’s tourism bump, as increased tourist footfall provided a much-needed boost to the hospitality sector, generating employment opportunities and boosting local businesses, said Baho. 

Meanwhile, Suhail Halaseh, president of Jordan Society for Travel Agents, told The Jordan Times that reservations for the coming weekend are also on the rise.  

“With the improvement in weather conditions, the upcoming weekend is witnessing a surge in reservations for travel operators and the Urdun Jannah programme, indicating an anticipated boom in tourism for the summer season,” Halaseh added. 

According to Halaseh, the Urdun Jannah domestic tourism programme was temporarily suspended over the past weekend. However, Baho said that individual reservations “did not disappoint”.

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