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Universal Studios Dubai

Swiminn6

Member
Jan 3, 2010
564
Florida
Call me selfish and greedy, but honestly I hope Universal Dubai never gets off the ground. I'm still jealous of all the cool unique attractions Singapore got! I would prefer they invest more into the US parks.
Well if you think about it, it could eventually be a win-win if the Dubai park becomes really popular. It will only give Universal more $$$ at it's disposal! :sneaky:
 

UNIrd

Premium Member
Jul 18, 2008
6,418
Do not want. Being gay and also a huge fan of Universal, I really disagree with them building a park somewhere where being gay is a punishable offense.
 

Swiminn6

Member
Jan 3, 2010
564
Florida
Do not want. Being gay and also a huge fan of Universal, I really disagree with them building a park somewhere where being gay is a punishable offense.
Yeah, they really might not end up building a park here because the culture is ridiculous! It's considered offensive to wear shorts and short sleeves in public, even in the desert heat... I definitely don't like their culture at all! Lighten up Emrati's, it's almost like America 30 years ago only in a modern setting!
 

universal_fanatic

Premium Member
Feb 12, 2008
1,826
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
I think you guys have a bit of a skewed perspective, assuming you've never been here. It's not considered offensive to wear shorts and a t-shirt, it's technically considered indecent to show knees or shoulders, but it's not gonna get you thrown in jail if you do. The worst you might get are some dirty looks. No one is forcing you to like their culture, but that's exactly what it is...their own culture. I'm sure Americans have traditions that the emirati people find ridiculous. That's what makes people and cultures unique! Dubai is also one of the most laid back emirates in the middle east and I think it's a perfect spot for a new Universal park.

I do agree that their stance on homosexuality is wrong but that shouldn't really factor in to the building of a theme park...
 

Swiminn6

Member
Jan 3, 2010
564
Florida
I think you guys have a bit of a skewed perspective, assuming you've never been here. It's not considered offensive to wear shorts and a t-shirt, it's technically considered indecent to show knees or shoulders, but it's not gonna get you thrown in jail if you do. The worst you might get are some dirty looks. No one is forcing you to like their culture, but that's exactly what it is...their own culture. I'm sure Americans have traditions that the emirati people find ridiculous. That's what makes people and cultures unique! Dubai is also one of the most laid back emirates in the middle east and I think it's a perfect spot for a new Universal park.

I do agree that their stance on homosexuality is wrong but that shouldn't really factor in to the building of a theme park...
I will say that I am basing my response on what i've read, never been there. I definitely figured Dubai was a lot more easy going as they are trying to build to appeal to everyone around the world! I totally get the part about the culture, I just really don't like it! I love a lot of cultures but not country's that still stick with old world values. And I am positive many people around the world don't like things about our culture!

Wasn't trying to say they shouldn't build a park just because of one factor though. I'm just thinking it might make it harder for Universal to build here with all the rules they must abide by due to the culture. I'm sure working with them on financials is a nightmare!
 

AndyP

Rookie
May 29, 2010
360
Scotland
Universal Studio's Dubai - A Step Closer?

http://www.emirates247.com/news/emirates/dubai-firms-launch-multi-billion-dollar-mbr-city-district-one-project-2013-05-01-1.504815

Dubai seem to have ridden the worst of the worldwide recession and starting looking on huge scale investment schemes again. The Mohammed Bin Rashid City was announced last November, but there was another press launch in the past day or so to lay out the plans for the first stage which, depending on which news report you read, seems to include a Universal Studio's.

Personally, I'd love a Universal Studio's in Dubai. Dubai is our second favourite place on the planet besides Florida. We head out there once every 18 months or so, but a Universal Dubai would probably get us out there once a year.
 

AndyP

Rookie
May 29, 2010
360
Scotland
Considering Singapore's attendance is reportedly in the tanks, I doubt Universal will be expanding to Dubai. At least I hope they don't.
I hope they do. :P

Didn't know Singapore's attendance was poor though. Any reason why that should be the case?
 

BBPH

V.I.P.
May 5, 2009
1,811
London, England
The type of travelers you get going to Dubai are not enough to keep this going enough, you don't have a peak season you get couples who may go one day in there one maybe two days....

Don't get me wrong I'm sure it would get busy but I don't see it being enough to fuel a $2.2 billion park.
 

AndyP

Rookie
May 29, 2010
360
Scotland
Huge disposable spend within the local community though, that could swell attendances. But I would agree that Dubai is not a regular 14 day family holiday destination..... yet. But with it's year round climate, and easier access from Europe, it could well become that.

Biggest problem with Dubai is the cost of hotels. The majority of hotels are 5* and are very expensive (certainly being compared to Orlando). Whenever we go, we have to really dig deep into our pockets and then search far and wide to get the best deal we can. Orlando, not so much. But flights for us from the UK are certainly cheaper to Dubai than Orlando. And the cost of holidaying when you are in Dubai is not as high as many folk think. Transport is cheap ans chips, although we try and avoid the taxi's because they all drive like they have already decided "today" is their last day on Earth. I chose not to share that opinion. :pray:
 

BBPH

V.I.P.
May 5, 2009
1,811
London, England
I'm a London travel agent and yeah in the summer period Dubai flights are cheaper as you'd be pretty mad to go during this time but if you know where to look Dubai flights are not cheaper than Florida! and no travel agent in the UK will push Dubai and as Travel agents sales are increasing year-on-year they'd need our support which wont happen as we know we get more money from a Florida booking!
 
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AndyP

Rookie
May 29, 2010
360
Scotland
I'm a London travel agent and yeah in the summer period Dubai flights are cheaper as you'd be pretty mad to go during this time but if you know where to look Dubai flights are not cheaper than Florida! and no travel agent in the UK will push Dubai and as Travel agents sales are increasing year-on-year they'd need our support which wont happen as we know we get more money from a Florida booking!
We've actually booked for Dubai in December and the flights - direct with Emirates - are about 40% of the cheapest flights we could find for our Orlando June holiday.
 

BBPH

V.I.P.
May 5, 2009
1,811
London, England
Orlando + Christmas = Hell flight prices but in general its not always the case that one is cheaper than the other I'd pretty much put them on parr with each other and its not often you have people that do both like yourself... Customers well save their arses of for Florida because it's Florida its big its America you wont get people doing that for Dubai and that's what uni would desperately need.
 

AndyP

Rookie
May 29, 2010
360
Scotland
Orlando + Christmas = Hell flight prices but in general its not always the case that one is cheaper than the other I'd pretty much put them on parr with each other and its not often you have people that do both like yourself... Customers well save their arses of for Florida because it's Florida its big its America you wont get people doing that for Dubai and that's what uni would desperately need.
All solid comments. Although I have to disagree on the flight prices issue - which is weird, because with you in the business, you must know your stuff. But as a consumer I can guarantee it is ALWAYS cheaper to fly to Dubai than Orlando. Significantly so. Our Dubai flights usually come at about £600 to £700 for the two of us. Orlando flights are seldom less than £1400 to £1600 for the two of us. Dubai flights are usually Dec/Jan, Orlando flights are usually June or September.

Don't you think though, that if there was a wider choice of more sensibly priced hotels and more encouragement for you guys to promote the Dubai area as a tourist destination, it could be as popular with families as the likes of Orlando. It has almost everything going for it; climate, blue sea's, incredible shopping. The only thing missing at the moment is a leisure/theme park.

Although I have to say, we have been treated with the most incredible degree of rudeness by non-tourist-employed locals. Really incredibly offensively rude. Those employed to treat you well, treat you like royalty. Those not, just don't. Whereas in Orlando, (in the touristy area's anyway), almost everyone is nice.
 

BBPH

V.I.P.
May 5, 2009
1,811
London, England
If you know who to fly with you can get a charter Florida flight for £300-500 (baring in mind these are London prices).

Being that most customers are pretty ignorant, no. Agents know that from one Florida booking they get the booking, the attraction tickets and the currency exchange (we earn much much more on USD than UAE).

If there was more support on Dubai then great but they have the rules and regulations that are enough to put 95% of customers off of the idea, everyone knows Florida its warm and fluffy and Mickey, Dubai on the other hand is portrayed built-up desert with ridiculous rules on public affection.
 

AndyP

Rookie
May 29, 2010
360
Scotland
Ah, true, I must admit I don't ever look at charter flights. Aren't they usually 7 or 14 day with no in between options? We usually go out for 9 nights. We run our own business so it's difficult to be away for more than that.

I must admit, this time around we're going with Virgin Holidays and that was booked in a Virgin Holidays branch. But the flights suited.

As we live about 80 mins from Newcastle Airport and 55 mins from Edinburgh Airport Orlando is ALWAYS 2 flights. But Dubai can be one flight. Makes such a huge difference to the cost.

In June we're driving to Manchester to do the one flight into MCO.

I do get what your saying on the fact that Dubai is simply portrayed as built up desert. I just wonder what it will take to convince the masses that's the wrong impression to give. Starting with you guys would be job one.

As for the ridiculous public affection laws. In my opinion, very loosely applied. Maybe it's my age, but I would no more snog the face off my wife in the middle of Magic Kingdom than I would on Jumeirah Beach Walk.

Great conversation by the way.

Out of interest... Have you been to Dubai?
 

universal_fanatic

Premium Member
Feb 12, 2008
1,826
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
I was fortunate enough to visit Dubai and Abu Dhabi this January and I must say, it's so much more than just a "built-up desert." I was found constantly reminding myself that "I'm in the middle of the desert!" Although the middle east is much more conservative, I would say Dubai was the least conservative. Although there were signs at the beach stating no revealing outfits, I saw plenty of bikinis! Of course, I didn't see any public displays of affection, and I think Andy is right...I wouldn't make out with my boyfriend in Dubai nor while waiting for a ride at Universal. There's a time and place for everything. As far as a Universal Studios in Dubai, I get BBPH's point. It would probably be steady at the parks, but not nearly the draw of Orlando or Hollywood.
 

WAJAS

Veteran Member
Aug 15, 2014
3,536
--Classified--
Dubailand is apparently still a thing. They built a bunch of houses and are building a downtown like entertainment district called The City of Arabia.