Hospitality sector awaits 9-day Eid holiday rush

Oman Sunday 09/June/2024 20:25 PM
By: Times News Service

Muscat: The upcoming nine-day Eid holiday is going to give a big boost to tourism in the Sultanate of Oman, say officials and people associated with the hospitality industry.

The Eid Al Adha holiday begins on Sunday, 16 June, and ends on Thursday, 20 June, which means the long weekend essentially starts on Friday, 14 June, and continues until Saturday, 22 June.

According to the Oman News Agency, “On the advent of Eid Al Adha 1445 AH and as per the Royal directives of His Majesty Sultan Haitham bin Tarik, it has been decided that the holiday for employees of the State’s Administrative Apparatus and other legal entities, as well as establishments of the private sector will start from Sunday, 9 Dhul Hijja 1445 AH corresponding to 16 June 2024, to Thursday, 13 Dhul Hijja 1445 AH, corresponding to 20 June 2024. Work shall be resumed on Sunday 23 June 2024.”

The Ministry of Labour pointed out that employers may agree on terms to engage employees on the said holiday— if deemed necessary—provided they compensate the workers for the holiday.

Tourism officials and hotel managers hope a lot of tourists from the GCC countries will visit Oman during Eid holidays.

“To escape the summer heat, we expect a large number of tourists to visit Jabal Akhdar and Dhofar,” said Arup Singh Deo, Director of Operations and Projects at Al Nahda Hotels & Resorts.

A record-breaking 4 million tourists had visited Oman in 2023, and this holiday could help the country boost that number.

Commenting on the expected business, Arup Singh Deo, added, “Yes, this holiday will be good for us, especially since it will be a long weekend. We see a surge in visitors from the neighbouring countries, whenever the holiday in Oman and other GCC countries coincides. So we think that this will be good for our business.”

Locals and expats in the country were looking forward eagerly to the holidays but the flight tickets have reached sky high. “I thought of going to India but the fare is 400 percent more than the normal price,” said Ravi Kishan, an Indian expat.

Faisal, an Omani national, said, “We will be travelling to Salalah to enjoy the greenery. It is our annual tradition so we are looking forward to it. I would like to take this opportunity to wish everyone Eid Mubarak.”

Airfares soar

P Kumar, an Indian expat, said: “He wanted to travel to Patna, India but the airfares are too high, so I have dropped my travel plan.”

He also said airfares from Muscat to Patna usually hovers around OMR120 to OMR 140 return, but this time it is around OMR300 return.

Instead of travelling to India, he would be travelling with his friends to the Daminiyat Islands.

He said, “We have made arrangements with a tour guide and he will take care of our entire stay. It’s really hot these days here so we will be spending the day swimming and snorkelling. It should be fun.”

Kabul Khan, who is from Pakistan, said that he will be visiting Jabal Akhdar with his family. “I want to show them the beauty of the Green Mountains,” he added.