According to estimates, there are currently over 300 holiday homes in Sharjah. Image Credit: Gulf News Archives

A holiday homes project has been launched in Sharjah to help diversify sources of income for the tourism sector and facilitate homeowners who wish to rent out their houses as holiday homes.

A regulatory framework to this effect was launched by the Sharjah Commerce and Tourism Development Authority (SCTDA) in cooperation with several government and private agencies and institutions in the emirate.

The project’s guidelines follow the international best practices for the operation of holiday homes, and offers guidance on operating requirements, classification criteria, violations and other mechanisms.

Khalid Jasim Al Midfa, Chairman of SCTDA, said: “With Sharjah Tourism’s Holiday Homes project, the emirate’s aspirations to continue advancing this sector has crossed a meaningful milestone, as the initiative not only introduces an innovative new service to the tourism landscape but also puts Sharjah’s home owners at the forefront of benefiting from a drive that is poised to drive more visitors from around the world to the emirate.”

“Through the Sharjah Tourism’s Holiday Homes Project, we seek to maximise visitor experience by ensuring high-quality classification standards and offering additional staycation options across the emirate of Sharjah.”

According to estimates, there are currently over 300 holiday homes in Sharjah. The first year of the project is likely to see the registration and licensing of 150 holiday homes. About 15 operating companies will be involved in the process, and the holiday homeowners will be given three months to complete the documentation process. The first phase of the project includes organising field visits and inspection campaigns, as well as electronic or digital follow-up of holiday homes, their operators, and owners.

These entities include the Department of Economic Development, Sharjah Municipality, Department of Planning and Survey in Sharjah, General Directorate of Civil Defence in Sharjah, and Sharjah Police are among the other government agencies working closely on the project.