DXB facilities back to 100% operating capacity in ‘milestone moment’

By Luke Barras-hill |

Dubai Airports reopened Concourse A at Dubai International Airport’s Terminal 3 complex last month. Source: DXB.

Dubai International Airport (DXB) is now 100% operational with all terminals, concourses, lounges, restaurants and retail outlets open, Dubai Airports has confirmed today (20 December).

Chief Executive Paul Griffiths labelled the moment an ‘important milestone for the aviation sector as well as for the city of Dubai and its economic growth’.

As reported, Dubai Airports reopened Concourse A at DXB’s Terminal 3 complex last month, recalling 900 Dubai Duty Free staff in the process.

Terminal 3 is tipped to serve more than 1.6 million passengers in the second half of December during the peak travel season.


“We took early steps to implement best-in-class hygiene and health protocols, fast track PCR testing facilities, and enhanced customer service and guest support resources to ensure the comfort, convenience and safety of travellers – and this has resulted in a strong recovery towards pre-pandemic levels of passengers,” commented Griffiths.

“This has been an enormous team effort and our employees and stakeholders have responded magnificently to the significant challenge of getting DXB back up and running at 100% capacity.”

Source: DXB.

Operations had been forced to close in March 2020 as the pandemic took hold, but Terminals 2 and 3 together with Concourses B and C arrivals recommenced from 22 June that year after UAE authorities eased international travel regulations for residents.

Outbound travel for UAE citizens and residents recommenced on 23 June 2020, while Dubai welcomed its first international tourists from 7 July that year.

Terminal 1 and Concourse D, home to over 60 international airlines, reopened on 24 June 2021.

Passenger traffic has steadily increased since, reaching 10.6 million passengers in the first half of 2021.

Robust growth followed in the third quarter of this year, prior to a surge in October 2021 that took the year-to-date passenger numbers to 20.7 million.

Dubai Duty Free is eyeing revenues of US$959 million in full-year 2021.

Passenger numbers are expected to reach 28.9 million by the end of 2021 – an increase of 2.1 million compared with the September 2021 forecast.

Griffiths added: “The rate of recovery of DXB has exceeded most other airports of comparable size and highlights the positive international reputation that Dubai has as an attractive city that has taken decisive steps to protect its visitors and residents.

“The number of visitors to Dubai is likely to exceed pre-pandemic levels during the final few weeks of the year which is an excellent milestone on our journey towards full recovery.”

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