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People from London and Manchester book more flights to the UAE than residents of other cities around the world, according to a leading online travel website.

After the two UK cities, most of the flight bookings to the UAE were made by the residents of Manama, Paris, Milan, Kuwait City, Doha, Riyadh, Cairo and New York City, according to figures released by Expedia.com.

“The UAE has traditionally been a favourite destination with British business people as well as holidaymakers seeking guaranteed sunshine. Travellers from the UK continue to make up the largest share of inbound travelers, but we are now seeing emerging development in flight bookings and searches from further afield such as Canada and the United States, as the UAE becomes an increasingly popular destination,” said Expedia Senior Editor Eman Barhoumeh.

Flight bookings on the portal to the UAE have experienced a strong upsurge, increasing over 25 per cent from 2013 to 2014, it said. The most popular flight origin is London, with almost five times as many tickets sold compared with Manchester, ranking second.

Dubai

For Dubai, most of the flight booking were done by people from London and Manchester followed by Paris, Kuwait City, Milan, Manama, Amsterdam, Riyadh, Beirut and Doha, the data showed.

“Flight bookings to Dubai International airport have steadily expanded on the site with a recent increase of almost 25 per cent in year-over-year. London and Manchester top the charts as leading flight origin destinations into Dubai,” the portal said in a statement.

The data analysis also revealed that flight bookings made from Canada have experienced the strongest development from 2013 to 2014, increasing 35 per cent.

Additionally, flights booked to Dubai from the UK have strengthened by 27 per cent over the same two year period, and Saudi Arabia and France by 24 per cent.

Eman Barhoumeh said Expedia witnessed a notable rise of flights booked to the UAE in recent years.

“In particular, Dubai has firmly established itself as both a key tourist destination and leading hub for business travel, as demonstrated by recent year-on-year growth of nearly 25 per cent for travel to that destination. Additionally, Abu Dhabi International Airport witnessed record breaking figures during Q1 2015 and we are looking forward to its expansion, which is due to provide a new capacity of 40 million passengers per year. There is also increasing consumer interest in Sharjah, so will be keeping a keen eye on passenger trends in the months ahead,” she said.