Dubai Duty Free marked its 31st anniversary with a special 25 per cent discount on a wide range of merchandise over three days which began at midnight on 17th December and continued until midnight on the operation’s anniversary day on 20th December. Total sales for the three days topped Dh188.86m ($51.74m).
The decision to extend the annual celebration beyond the one day was due to the high passenger traffic expected over the pre-Christmas holiday weekend. The busiest day passenger-wise was Friday, 19th December when over 80,000 passengers used Dubai International Airport.
The anniversary discount for 72 hours resulted in a spending spree at Dubai International and at Al Maktoum International (DWC) with sales figures on 18th December reaching Dhs37.60m ($10.3m) and Dhs.44.17 ($12.10m)m on 19th December. On the anniversary day itself, 20th December, Dubai Duty Free daily sales reached over Dhs107m ($29.33m) in the 24-hour period.
Commenting on the anniversary Colm McLoughlin, Executive Vice Chairman of Dubai Duty Free said: “We are very happy to have achieved such tremendous sales over the anniversary weekend and that so many travelers had the opportunity to avail of the special discount. Achieving sales of Dhs188.86 m ($51.74m) over the three day period represents a 21.85 per cent increase over the same three day period in 2013. I would like to thank everyone for helping us achieve such sales, in particular thanks to our customers and our staff who did a great job in serving the high number of passengers.”
Dubai Duty Free began introducing a discount offer across a wide range of merchandise on its 20th Anniversary in 2003 and it has now become a popular day with travelers, some of whom book their flights in order to shop on that day. The statistics on 20th December alone highlight the huge volume of sales that passed through the cash points within the 24- hour period.
From a category point of view, Perfumes was the highest selling category with sales of Dhs27.86m ($7.63m) representing 26 per cent increase of the total daily sales. Watches were the second most popular category on the anniversary day with sales of Dhs25.3m ($6.93m) followed by Cosmetics with sales of Dhs13.89m ($3.8m).
During the three-day 31st Anniversary sale, Dubai Duty Free’s Distribution Centre issued 3,812 pallets of merchandise and conducted over 358 trips from the warehouse to the airport. The highest number of pallets was issued on 17th December with 1,180 pallets being delivered over 109 trips. The total number of picks in the warehouse during this period was 37,446 for 1.55m units of merchandise, with the highest picks on 17th December of 12,121 picks for 477,627 units of merchandise. Over the three-day period (18th, 19th and 20th December), the cash registers recorded a total of 405,407 sales transactions with 205,485 sales transactions alone on 20th December.
The 31st Anniversary celebrations saw DDF officials headed by Colm McLoughlin, Executive Vice Chairman, George Horan, President along with other senior officials conduct a Millennium Millionaire and Finest Surprise draw, following all of the excitement of staff activities in Concourse C-Terminal 1. Christmas came early for Mr. Jophy Jose, an Abu Dhabi-based Indian national who was surprised and delighted to win $1m in the Millennium Millionaire promotion as his ticket No. 2198 was drawn in Series 181.
Three more lucky winners were also announced with each one taking home a luxury vehicle in the Finest Surprise Promotion. Mr. Al Otaibi, a Saudi national won the latest model of BMW X6 50i Exclusive in Series 1583 with ticket no. 1036, Mr. Allen D’Souza, an Indian national living in Dubai won a Ducati Hypermotard (Dark Stealth) in Series 246 with ticket no. 0586 and Mr. Roberto Reyes, a Filipino national also from Dubai won a Ducati Hyperstrada (Arctic White) in Series 247 with ticket no. 0548.
Following the draw, a presentation was made to a previous Millennium Millionaire winner, Mr. Kaimal Vinod Veliyammakiyil, a forty-three-year-old Indian national from Dubai who won his prize in Series 179 with ticket no. 1696. The 11-year old winner of a previous Finest Surprise draw, Mohammed Shanil Palapetty, from Ras Al Khaimah, visited Dubai Duty Free to receive the keys for a McLaren MP4 12C Coupe in Series 1579 with ticket no. 1179. Mohammed’s father accompanied the schoolboy and will no doubt take charge of the car keys for a few more years.
Dubai Duty Free’s employees also enjoyed a special Staff Finest Surprise draw held over two days which resulted in a total of Dhs180,000 being won by employees. Dubai Duty Free currently employs around 6,000 staff and of the original 100 staff who joined in December 1983, 38 remain in active service.
Present at yesterday’s (20th December) celebration were other Dubai Duty Free senior officials namely: Salah Tahlak, Senior Vice President-Corporate Communications, Ramesh Cidambi, Senior Vice President- IT & Logistics, Sinead El Sibai, Vice President – Marketing, Saba Tahir, Vice President-Purchasing, Bernard Creed, Vice President-Finance, Nic Bruwer, Vice President-Human Resources and Sean Staunton, Vice President-Operations.