Dubai airport sees surge in arrivals

DUBAI: Dubai’s airport welcomed 66 million passengers in 2022, more than double the previous year, it said Tuesday, a spike its chief executive attributed to “huge growth” in Russian travelers. The main business hub of the oil-rich United Arab Emirates is home to one of the world’s busiest airports.

The airport “welcomed a total of 66,069,981 passengers during 2022,” representing year-on-year growth of 127 percent, according to a statement. In 2021, around 29.1 million passengers passed through Dubai, and the authorities had expected 57 million visitors for the year 2022.

India, Saudi Arabia and the United Kingdom topped passenger arrivals but Russia has also “been an important contributor”, CEO Paul Griffiths said. “We’ve seen a huge growth in the Russian market since the… tensions between Ukraine and Russia” started on year ago, he told AFP.

Russians accounted for 1.9 million passengers-more than double the 912,000 recorded for 2021, Griffiths said. The UAE has maintained a neutral stance towards Russia’s war in Ukraine, which is nearing its one-year anniversary.

The Gulf nation has emerged as a top destination for rich Russian emigres fleeing the impact of Western sanctions. Russians were the top buyers of Dubai properties last year, according to brokerage Betterhomes, bolstering the city’s record real estate transactions last year.

Dubai’s airport was briefly closed to commercial flights from March to July 2020 due to COVID-19. It was one of the first travel hubs to reopen after the pandemic. In 2020, it received only 25.9 million passengers, down from the 86 million the previous year. Following strong results, the world’s busiest international airport raised its forecast for 2023 to 78 million. DXB welcomed a total of 66,069,981 passengers in 2022, a year-on year-growth of 127 per cent.

“We knew it was the year when growth would return to the air travel sector in a big way, but the surge was much stronger than anticipated and we had to do our best to turn that challenge into an opportunity,” said Paul Griffiths, CEO of Dubai Airports.

“Thanks to the planning, preparation, and all collaboration and hard work of our people across the airport community, we were ready to meet the challenge of rapid recovery in customer numbers while delivering significant improvement in our service quality across the board,” he added. Griffiths said 2023 is expected to be another record year for the airport, with Dubai hosting major international events including its annual airshow and COP28.

“It will be another year of new challenges and opportunities and we are ready for them,” he said. Cargo continued to register a contraction in volumes with 420,125 tons recorded in the fourth quarter, down 31.7 per cent compared to 614,834 tons in Q4 of 2021. DXB handled 1,727,815 tons of cargo during 2022, a drop of 25.5 per cent resulting from the moving of all major freight operators back to Dubai World Central (DWC) and the return of pax-freighter aircraft back to passenger operations during the year.

“Our top priority in 2023 will be our customers, our people, and sustainability – three key areas that are crucial to our aspirations and goals as the world’s busiest global hub, a preferred employer, and a key player and trend-setter in the world’s aviation industry,” Griffiths said. – AFP

more recommended stories

Terms of Use:

  • This website Arabian Daily is an individual’s property, not used for any commercial or sales purposes. What you see here are one’s random thoughts in action. I, by no means, endorse any product or party through this, unless stated explicitly.
  • All work you will find here is copyrighted unless stated otherwise. No part of this work can be reproduced in any way with the exception of a) if you share our work, it should link back to this website; b) if you quote any part of our work, it should be properly credited to us with a link to this website.
  • All images used on this website have been taken from open source image websites on the Internet. If any of them are copyrighted to you and you want us to take them down or add credits, please feel free to contact us here, or by using the contact form on this page.
  • The views expressed on Arabian Daily are solely ours. They do not represent any party or any particular school of thought. This website does not promote racism in any form.
  • Privacy Policy:
    This website will respect the readers’ and the writer’s privacy. We do not sell any of their personal or contact information to another company. We do not put your information on spam lists. Also, and more importantly, we are not responsible for the privacy practices of any of our advertisers or website commenters.
  • Reserve Rights: We reserve the right to change the focus on this website, to shut it down, sell it or to change the terms of use at our own discretion.