Just one year to go until Dubai showcases the World’s, Greatest Show. Everyone in the United Arab Emirates (and possibly other parts of the world) are currently waiting for Expo 2020, which will be hosted in Dubai and scheduled to open on October 20, 2020, until April 10, 2021. This six-month-long exhibition is set to welcome 190 participating countries and is expected to attract around 25 million visitors with 70 percent of those visitors coming from outside of the United Arab Emirates. The exhibition is based on the theme “Creating Minds, Creating the Future” and is anticipated as the largest event ever held in the Arab world. Here, we’re going to talk about everything you need to know about Expo 2020 in Dubai.

What is the Expo?

An expo is a global destination for people to showcase innovation, share ideas, celebrate human ingenuity, and encourage collaboration. A world expo is organized every five years and held for six months. In 1851, the first World Expo (World’s Fair) was held in London’s Crystal Palace. This expo was known as The Great Exhibition of the Works of Industry of All Nations organized by Prince Albert, Queen Victoria’s husband, along with members of the Royal Society for the Encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce (RSA). This expo displayed hundreds of modern manufacturing, including the telegraph. Around 6 million people came to the expo, including Charles Dickens, Charles Darwin, and Charlotte Brontë.

Future world expo introduced numerous amazing inventions, such as the typewriter at Philadelphia Expo in 1876, Ferris wheel at the Chicago Expo in 1893, the diesel engine at the Paris Expo in 1900, electricity at the St. Louis Expo in 1904, the television set at the New York Expo in 1939, the mobile phone and IMAX film at the Osaka Expo in 1970, and wireless tram in the Yeosu Expo in 2012. 

The latest Expo was held in Milan in 2015 with a theme of “Feeding the Planet, Energy for Life.” This exhibition introduced energy-saving elevators and solar trees.

What is Expo 2020?

In 2013, the Bureau International des Expositions general assembly in Paris awarded Dubai as the host of the next World Expo. This declaration created an enormous celebration in Dubai, with a firework display at Burj Khalifa. It will be the first World Expo to be held in the Middle East, North Africa, and South Asia (MENASA). The main theme of this expo is ‘Connecting Minds, Creating the Future’ with sub-themes of opportunity (unlocking potential), mobility (creating smarter and better connections), and sustainability (living in balance with the world around us). 

This expo invites all innovators from around the globe to share ideas about the future of employment, education, financial model, travel and exploration, transport, improving mobility for disabled people and disconnected communities, logistics, climate change, protecting natural ecosystems and promoting biodiversity, resource management, sustainable cities, and numerous other challenges that currently are present in the world. With Expo 2020, the country will go a step further to inspire the next generation to spark innovation. This expo will be a celebration of the UAE Vision 2021 by stimulating the development of innovative business, supporting the growth of tourism, and enhancing UAE’s international reputation as the perfect location to do business. It is predicted that Expo 2020 will yield an AED 122 billion investment windfall for the United Arab Emirates.    

What can visitors expect from Expo 2020?

The site of Expo 2020 is located in the area called Dubai South, near Al Maktoum International Airport. Covering 4.38 square kilometers, the expo will have four main entrances. Visitors can travel to the expo from Dubai Marina within 16 minutes on the Dubai Metro Route 2020, which will carry up to 46,000 passengers per hour. Visitors will be greeted at Al Wasl Plaza, a structure that will become the heart of Expo 2020. It is a striking structure with a translucent dome. The dome was designed by a Chicago architectural firm AS+GG and will house waterfalls, fountains, parks, palm-lined courtyards, and three pavilions to represent Expo 2020 sub-themes. At night, the dome will transform into a 360-degree screen. Besides the key themes, one of the highlights of the expo will be the display of contemporary architecture. Visitors can also enjoy the cultural experience, live performances, art shows, inspiring talks, and more. The expo will celebrate culture, collaboration, and innovation.