Dubai Duty Free recalls 900 employees as DXB Concourse A reopens

By Charlotte Turner |

Dubai Airports has now reopened Concourse A at Dubai International’s Terminal 3 complex, taking the world’s busiest international airport closer to its 100% operational capacity, while the airport’s core duty free retailer, Dubai Duty Free has recalled 900 of its employees to man the stores.


Flight EK659 which arrived from Male was Concourse A’s first flight since the facility was closed 20 months ago on 25 March, 2020 as part of measures taken by the UAE authorities to control the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic.


Dubai Duty Free (DDF) Chief Operating Officer Ramesh Cidambi, who recently addressed delegates at this week’s MEADFA conference in Dubai, told TRBusiness that the company is expecting the reopening to provide a big boost to the business on its continued road to recovery.



“By 24 November, we will have gone from 23,000sq m of retail (out of a total of 37,000sq m) to about 31,000sq m…We are recalling 900 employees for the Concourse A opening; we recalled 600 for Concourse D opening earlier this year.”


Dubai Duty Free is eager to welcome back customers to its stores in Concourse A.

Dubai Duty Free is eager to welcome back customers to its stores in Concourse A.


“The majority of retail space will be open at that point, with the exception of Al Maktoum International Airport which is under 5,000sq m…which means we will finish 2021 with really the entire footprint open, including the arrivals shop.”


In line with its intention to elevate the fashion and accessories component of its retail offer, DDF opened a new Gucci store in Concourse A just as the concourse shutdown in March of last year and the company said a new Dior store in Concourse A ‘will open soon’.


The reopening of Concourse A follows robust growth in passenger numbers at DXB throughout the year and a consistent surge of demand in the final quarter.


Concourse A will be reopened in phases over the coming weeks, helping DXB to maintain service levels while accommodating the rush of seasonal travellers in December and beyond.


The world’s largest purpose-built facility for the Airbus A380, Concourse A is connected to Terminal 3 by an airport train and has capacity to serve 18 million passengers annually.


According to Cidambi, there is a possibility that Al Maktoum could reopen for a short period of time in the summer of 2022 in order to help with some runway maintenance that will happen at DXB, but beyond that it is not yet clear.


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