Dubai Launches Blockchain-Powered ‘Tourism 2.0’ Marketplace

Dubai launched a blockchain-based marketplace for the tourism sector called Tourism 2.0. It aims to help tourists find better offers from hotels and tour operators.

On Wednesday, April 18, the Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DTCM) of Dubai launched Tourism 2.0, a blockchain-powered virtual marketplace that connects users to hotels and tour services. Tourism 2.0 will develop the potential  to make Dubai a leading destination for global travel by 2020. The intention to create a blockchain marketplace was announced earlier.

Tourism 2.0 is a blockchain-based business to business marketplace that connects clients to hotels and tour operators. With the help of it, operators can access hotel occupancy and room rates in Dubai, thus helping customers to find the most suitable offers. The platform will also allow tourists to personalize their travel experiences in the city.

DTCM’s move is part of a broader initiative known as Dubai 10X, which is backed by the Dubai Future Foundation (DFF) and aims to push the Dubai Government agencies ten years ahead of the rest of the world in every sector. His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, who is Crown Prince of Dubai and chairman of DFF’s Board of Trustees, launched the Dubai Tourism plan at the 6th World Government Summit in February, among other innovative initiatives under Dubai 10X, which include a total of 26 projects proposed by 24 government entities.

Dr. Helal Saeed Al Marri, Director General of DTCM, commented on the blockchain adoption in the tourism market: 

“By increasing the pace of digital transformation in the travel sector, Dubai Is positioned to expand tourism by bringing innovative start-ups into the ecosystem, which will ultimately deliver value in terms of higher and faster visitor conversion, and greater GDP impact,” he said.

“As the pioneer in adopting the most secure and transparent virtualization technology in the tourism sector, we will be able to streamline booking processes and create democracy in travel for all,” Al Marri added.

In May 2013, Dubai launched Tourism Vision 2020 program, aiming to handle the demand of 20 million visitors annually by 2020. Last year, the city was visited by 15.79 million visitors, up 6.2% from 2016. Tourism 2.0, will help Dubai get closer to achieving the Vision 2020 objectives.