Dubai Airports today released its year-end traffic report, which confirm that Dubai International has taken over the position as the number one airport for international passenger numbers from Heathrow.
During 2014, the gateway welcomed 70,475,636, up 6.1% from the 66,431,533 recorded in 2013.
The airport says this followed robust passenger traffic growth of 7.5% in December with 6,498,573 travellers passing through the facility compared to 6,047,126 recorded in the corresponding month last year.
HH Sheikh Ahmed Bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman of Dubai Airports, explains: “This historic milestone is the culmination of over five decades of double-digit average growth that were inspired by the vision of the late Sheikh Rashid Bin Saeed Al Maktoum.
“It is a vision that has been carried forward strongly by our leader HH Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, vice president and PM of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai.
“The shared goal is to make Dubai a global centre of aviation and we are nearing that goal thanks to an open skies policy, a friendly business environment, Dubai’s growing attractiveness as a centre for trade, commerce and tourism, growing network connectivity due to the rapid expansion of Emirates and flydubai and timely investment in aviation infrastructure.”
Aircraft movements in December rose 4% to 34,136, up marginally from the 32,832 recorded during December 2013.
Full-year aircraft movements totalled 357,339 compared to 369,953 versus 2013, a contraction of 3.4%, primarily due to the temporary reduction of flights experienced during the 80-day runway refurbishment project during the summer, and the shift of freighter operators and general aviation to Al Maktoum International at Dubai World Central (DWC) earlier this year.
Spurred by an ongoing increase in the number of wide-bodied aircraft servicing the airport, the numbers of passengers per flight increased 5.1% to 208.3 passengers for the full year.
In 2014, the top market for growth in passenger volumes was Western Europe (+1,192,831 passengers) closely followed by the Indian Subcontinent (+936,449 passengers), Asia (+716,180) and North America (+432,597).
In terms of percentage growth in 2014 Eastern Europe (+21%) was the strongest market followed by North America (18.6%), Asia (12.6%), Australasia (9.2%) and Western Europe (8.8%).
Paul Griffiths, CEO of Dubai Airports, says: “Much like 2014, 2015 promises to be another eventful year featuring more record passenger numbers and facility upgrades including the opening of Concourse D which will boost Dubai International’s capacity to 90 million.
“Today we are also releasing our projections for 2015 traffic at Dubai International which forecast 79 million passengers.
“We will have more flights connecting more people to more destinations. And we will be fully focussed on rolling out technology, new F&B concepts and service initiatives that further enhance the passenger experience.”
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