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UAE travelers biggest Gulf spenders at 2014 World Cup
July 13, 2014, 3:26 pm

UAE travelers have spent $1.14 million in Brazil since the 2014 football World Cup kicked off, using Visa cards, according to the Visa Everywhere Travel Report for the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil. The report also adds that, UAE travelers rank number 30 in the list of global spenders at the World Cup.

Saudi Arabian travelers, meanwhile, spent $607,000, taking the 39th place, followed by Qatari travelers that spent more than $317,000, securing the 53rd spot. All in all, Middle Eastern travelers have spent $2.7 million in Brazil.

The report, which analyses travel data and spending through the use of Visa credit, debit and prepaid cards, reveals that some smaller Brazilian cities, which are hosting tournament games, realized some of the most significant increases in spending by international travelers.

The figures represent an overall increase in spending of 419 percent by Middle Eastern travelers, when compared with the same period last year and well ahead of the global increase of 152 percent.

“The group stage of the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil has shown that international tourism was strong well beyond the cities of Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo, as fans travelled throughout Brazil to support their teams. But what has been significant for us has been the enthusiasm shown by visitors from the Middle East, despite not having a team competing,” says Ihab Ayoub general manager ‎Middle East and North Africa at Visa Inc. The fact that  these games are bringing positive economic impact to regions of Brazil that are typically less visited by international travelers is another sign of success for the tournament overall.”

Total spend by international travelers using Visa cards throughout the group stage hit $188m. This represents a 152 percent year-over-year increase and a 141 percent surge, when compared with the $78m spent by travelers attending the 2013 FIFA Confederations Cup during the same timeframe.

The highest spending day in the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil was June 25, when travelers spent $17.4m in just one day. Visitors from the US, followed by the UK, France, and Mexico represented the largest overall tourist spend in Brazil.  The most significant spending increases were seen from countries such as Australia (+835 percent), Colombia (+765 percent), Chile (+519 percent) and Mexico (+396 percent).


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