After checking in at Dubai International Airport make sure that you leave yourself plenty of time to browse the world famous, award winning, Dubai Duty Free.
Dubai Duty Free opened for business on 20th December 1983 with first year sales reaching US$ 20 million. This compares to sales in 2011 which reached a total in excess of US$ 1.46 billion. Dubai Duty Free will continue to grow and expand as it builds up its multi-billion dollar expansion strategy. The opening of Emirates Terminal 3 in October 2008 has resulted in the retail operation more than doubling in size from 7,000 square metres to 15,000 square metres. Dubai Duty Free is also planning the retail operation in Dubai World Central in Jebel Ali which will eventually handle 120 million passengers per year.
Additionally every passenger travelling through Dubai International Airport has the opportunity to become a dollar millionaire by entering the Dubai Duty Free Millennium Millionaire draw. There are only 5,000 tickets sold and tickets may be purchased at a cost of Dhs 1,000 (US$ 278).
Alternatively there are opportunities to win one of several high-quality cars such as a Mercedes Benz, Rolls Royce, Porsche or Bentley. The same rules apply as the ‘Millionaire’ draw, however the tickets are priced at Dhs 500 (US$ 139) and only 1,000 tickets are sold. Dubai Duty Free also guarantees to deliver the car anywhere in the world and such is the popularity of the draw, that on average, one luxury car is raffled every week and to date there have been over 1,500 winners.
Dubai tops the global duty free spending league, with shoppers at Dubai Duty Free spending more than US$ 46 a head on average, which is three times more than anywhere else in the world. In continental Europe, the average duty free spend is less than US$ 15 per head and it is below US$ 10 in North America. Dubai's nearest competitor is the Middle East region as a whole, averaging US$ 15.59 per head.