A record-breaking five million passengers passed through Dubai International Airport in July 2012, beating the previous record monthly traffic figure in January 2012 of 4.85 million passengers.
According to the monthly traffic report issued by operator Dubai Airports, Dubai International handled a total of 5,006,155 passengers in July compared to 4,724,109 in July 2011, a year-on-year increase of 6%. Year to date traffic reached 32,937,794, up 12.4% over the 29,291,927 recorded in the corresponding period last year.
“This is yet another record for Dubai International and one that we had anticipated based on the growth trends in the first half of the year. Since 2009 average monthly traffic at Dubai International has skyrocketed from just under 3.5 million in 2009 to over 4.7 million in 2012. This clearly signals our emergence as a leading global hub,” said Paul Griffiths, CEO of Dubai Airports.
“July’s traffic volumes mean that an average of 112 passengers passed through our airport every minute of every day,” continued Griffiths. “By 2018, when we expect to complete the expansion of Dubai International, that will soar to just under 170 passengers per minute. That is why we are investing US$7.8 billion in the future of this airport. In turn that investment will drive an increase in aviation’s contributions to Dubai’s GDP from the current US$22 billion to US$45.4 billion in 2020.”
The largest regional traffic growth in July in terms of total passenger numbers was recorded on routes to and from Western Europe (+106,926), Africa (+41,990), the Indian subcontinent (+41,706), and Asia (+40,840). Regions with the highest percentage growth included South America (82.6%), Russia and CIS (38.6%), and Australasia (16.4%). The impact of traffic fluctuations during the Islamic holy month of Ramadan was felt on traffic from AGCC (+0.1%) and Middle Eastern (–9.2%) routes.
During July, Dubai International handled aircraft movements totalling 27,829, up 2.4% from 27,166 recorded during July 2011. Year to date (July) aircraft movements stood at 198,078, up 6.2% from 186,538 posted during the corresponding period in 2011.
In terms of cargo volumes Dubai International surged 6.2% in July 2012 to 204,510 tonnes of air freight compared to 192,538 tonnes recorded during the same period in 2011. The year to date (July) freight volume has reached 1,290,966 tonnes, up 2.8% over 1,255,262 tonnes for the corresponding period last year.
Dubai International doubled its annual capacity to 60 million passengers with the opening of Terminal 3 in 2008. Just four years later the airport is once again nearing capacity with 56.5 million passengers projected to pass through the facility in 2012.
Dubai Airports’ Strategic Plan 2020 will boost airport capacity to 90 million by 2018. The next milestone is Concourse 3, the world’s first purpose-built A380 facility, which will boost capacity to 75 million passengers. It will open once it has successfully completed all operational readiness tests, which is anticipated to occur during the first quarter of 2013.