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The global COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted the tourism business, but that hasn’t stopped Desert Adventures Tourism from expanding thanks to a move to the cloud, the adoption of travel management software, and recent, new partnerships with online travel agencies (OTAs) that include dynamic links to booking apps. 

Though tourism has taken a hit this year, the overall historic trend has been toward increasing international travel. Given the sheer scale of the industry, it’s now clear that technology provides the foundation for sustainable, optimal growth, and that digital transformation is a necessity for any travel business to prosper in a field that has become more competitive as OTAs proliferate.

Desert Adventures Tourism, based in Dubai, has undergone a digital transformation that has allowed it to expand its business, even during the pandemic.

“From the context of Desert Adventures (DAT), digital opportunities have offered to us the ability to enter new markets

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Alain Pinel, Special to The Desert Sun
Published 5:00 a.m. PT Sept. 8, 2020

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It’s time we identify and manufacture new growth engines to kick-start a new sustainable economic expansion in the desert. The desert is not just for lizards and weekend tourists; people actually live here and need new businesses to bring jobs and revenues to the valley.

“Greater Palm Springs” has been a tourist destination since the 1950s. In 2020, it still is — or was, until COVID-19 fouled some of the plans. The crisis has revealed the obvious: our traditional economy is growing stale and local businesses and residents are growing broke.

Today, amazingly, more than half our jobs are concentrated in the businesses battered by the virus and the passage of time: low-paid and seasonal sectors like hospitality, retail, restaurants and other tourism-related businesses. We still substantially

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An ultra-modern vertical farm in the middle of the desert stands as a testament to Dubai’s determination to spark a “green revolution” to overcome its dependence on food imports.

Al-Badia market garden farm produces an array of vegetable crops in multi-storey format, carefully controlling light and irrigation as well as recycling 90 percent of the water it uses.

“It’s a green revolution in the middle of the desert,” the farm’s director Basel Jammal tells AFP.

Al-Badia market garden farm produces an array of vegetable crops in multi-storey format, carefully controlling light and irrigation as well as recycling 90 percent of the water it uses Al-Badia market garden farm produces an array of vegetable crops in multi-storey format, carefully controlling light and irrigation as well as recycling 90 percent of the water it uses Photo: AFP / Karim SAHIB

“Each plant is given the amount of light, humidity, heat and water it needs. It’s as if it were a guest in a five-star hotel,” he says.

The COVID-19 pandemic, which disrupted global supply chains, has refocused attention on food security

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