Dubai's Digital Wonderland: Discovering eServices for Tourism

Created: Jul 03, 2023

Updated: June 19, 2024


Dubai, one of the wealthiest of the seven emirates constituting the country, is known for its modern architecture, tourism, luxurious lifestyle, entertainment, food and shopping. Dubai is a vibrant city, portraying a fancy and vibrant culture. Over the past three decades, the growth in population of expatriates and nationals migrating to the city has been unprecedented. The city is known for its business-friendly and job-centric environment, and is also acclaimed by a few experts to be one of the top cities in the world with the greatest opportunities in terms of jobs and businesses. The increase in construction, development of technological sectors, and its inclination towards oil and gas revenues has led to a huge influx of skilled expatriates, mostly from the neighboring countries like Pakistan, India, Bangladesh and other Asian countries to relocate to Dubai to play an important role in Dubai’s multi-sector economy. This has led the government to notably shift towards offering quality e-services to the residents, and tourists which can be accessed through the official government website. Recently, major technological and strategic advancements have been made to the eServices and the Dubai Government has been working tirelessly to ensure a welcoming and seamless experience for everyone.

Government E-Services

Dubai eServices play a very significant role in facilitating tourism and enhancing the overall experience of the visitor. These services include visa applications, bill payments, and online shopping. Various other digital platforms and services were introduced by the government to streamline the processes and make it easier for the visitors to access information online.
Some key aspects of eServices related to Tourism include:

Online Reservations and Ticketing

A huge number of tourist sites use online ticketing systems that allow customers to buy tickets in advance. Popular locations including the Burj Khalifa, Dubai Parks and Resorts, and the Dubai Aquarium & Underwater Zoo are included in this. Tourists may also make reservations for cinemas, spas, exhibitions and other services online. In addition to these services, there are several mobile applications available for tourists and residents alike. These applications provide a variety of services, including real-time traffic information, restaurant and hotel bookings, and timetables for public transit. Careem, a ride-hailing app similar to Uber and Zomato, which offers ride-hailing services and offers details and ratings for nearby eateries, is one of the most well-known applications in Dubai.

Online Shopping

Dubai is famous for its fascinating and elegant shopping malls. It is home to the most widely known international brands, as well as local retailers selling quality products. Online marketplaces like Amazon, eBay, noon, Dubizzle, Jumbo, DesertCart and major shopping outlets where grocery and shopping stores like Carrefour, Dubai Store, Sharaf have mobile applications, with amazing discount deals and promotions at different times of the year. The products range from Beauty Products, Electronic Gadgets, Clothing, Food, Jewellery, Grocery, Home & Kitchen items, and other accessories.

Dubai Tourism Website

Dubai’s Official Tourism website,, offers a range of options for visitors to explore the city before actually arriving in the city. It allows you to go through the beautiful beaches, record-breaking attractions, adventures, local culture, and lifetime experiences like no other. The website also provides you with a list of things to do on your trip to the city, with Art & Culture, Food & Drinks, Shopping, Major sights & attractions, Spas & Wellness centers. Visitors can also explore information about deals and offers on the website, which include hotel reservations, tour planning, itineraries, and activities to do when you arrive. The website also provides the details of the new and trending activities according to the seasons, and what major developments are taking place when you arrive. A complete A to Z guide of the entire city is available on the website. Furthermore, it encompasses pictures, videos and articles of stories from people who have visited Dubai as a tourist destination, which garners a person’s interest and helps him/her to plan for the trip accordingly. It’s no wonder that Dubai was named TripAdvisor’s#1 travel destination in 2023, and the most popular tourist destination for the second consecutive year.

Visa Application

Tourists can apply for Dubai visas online through the official portal of the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs (GDRFA). The UAE visa website offers different types and categories of tourist visas, which can be selected online and the application made without being involved in the hassle of visiting multiple agencies and offices. The eVisa system offers different types of visas, including tourist visas, and allows applicants to submit their documents, check out and pay the total amount for the visa, track the status of their application, and receive their e-visa online.

Digital Dubai Apps & Services

The city's citizens and tourists' daily lives are supported by a variety of growing technology-based apps that are housed in Digital Dubai. A few of these include Dubai Now, Rashid, Dubai Pulse, Dubai Careers, Smart Employee, Happiness Metre, among many more,
Some of the apps listed in the Digital Dubai include:
  • Dubai Now App: The first and only unified Dubai Government application that provides access to more than 120 government and private sector services from over 30 entities. It allows the options of bill payment, mobile top-up, renewal of car registration, pay for petrol, pay for parking, buying/selling of cars within Dubai, view your tenant contract and pay rent, manage health and medical facilities, contains the complete Dubai university directory, manage police and security issues, Islam and religious practices and principles, travel routes and destinations, and many more
  • Smart Supplier App: An app to enable suppliers to access and manage their transactions with government entities within a single application.
  • Government Resource Planning (GRP) System: An evolving system where business intelligence and mobility integrate to form the solution.
  • UAE Pass: An app representing the National digital Identity and online signature system
  • Happiness Meter: Represents one of Dubai’s smart cities initiatives
  • Smart Employee App: Applicable for employees and managers to access and utilize the worklist online
  • Dubai Careers App: An online platform to search for latest jobs and trends, and lists career options as per your education and objectives
  • Dubai Pay: The shared payment service allows government organizations and service providers to now give their clients a 24/7 payment option. It makes it simple, convenient, and secure for UAE citizens, residents, and tourists to make payments utilizing a variety of payment alternatives.

Dubai's Digital Wonderland: Discovering eServices for Tourism - Major Trends and Statistics


Infographics by GO-Globe Dubai

  • The UAE Leisure, Entertainment and Tourist Digital Services Market is projected to grow at a CAGR of around 9.73% from 2023-2028
  • As reported by PwC in 2022, around 46% of the employers in the country believe that there is a shortage of employees with specialized digital & technical skills
  • Out of a total population of 10.17 million, up to 10.07 million people in the UAE use the internet, with a market penetration of 99.02% in January 2023
  • As of January 2023, there were 9.69 million Smartphone users, which makes up to 95% of the population with access to smartphones
  • There are 9.20 million mobile internet users who spend 4 hours 18 minutes on the internet daily.
  • Mobile phones account for 63.65% of web traffic.
  • 65.11% of people prefer using mobile internet.
  • Google Chrome is the most used browser, accounting for 68.72% of the web traffic.
  • A total of 6.02 million people visited Dubai between January and April 2023.
  • Dubai welcomed 4.67 million international overnight visitors in the first quarter of 2023, compared to 3.97 million tourists during the same period in 2022, a 17%increase
  • Total number of international visitors in 2022 was 14.36 million.
  • Dubai saw an increase of 7.08 million visitors in 2022, which is a 97% increase from 2021.
  • Revenue in the Travel & Tourism market is projected to reach US$1,285.00mn in 2023.
  • Tourism Revenue is expected to show an annual growth rate (CAGR 2023-2027) of 5.12%, resulting in a projected market volume of US$1,569.00mn by 2027
  • Operator Dubai Airports recently raised its forecast for 2023 to 77.8 million passengers, from an earlier projection of 75.5 million. The result would mark a 25% increase on forecast passenger volumes for 2022

International Tourists in Dubai (2015-2022)

Number of Tourists
14.20 Million
14.90 Million
15.79 Million
15.92 Million
16.73 Million
2020 (Year of COVID)
5.51 Million
2021 (Year of COVID)
7.28 Million
14.36 Million


Dubai has been making huge strides in the online and technological space. Within the past decade, the Government of Dubai has transformed their economy and increased the usage and ease of eServices, which has generated huge amounts of revenue due to tourism from all across the world. A huge number of politicians, celebrities, movie actors and actresses, pop singers, and cultural artists choose Dubai as their tourist destination. The government of Dubai is continuously investing in digital infrastructure to enhance the tourism experience and make it more convenient for visitors to access information and services.

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