Emirates airlines Dubai International Airport in Dubai
The April-June period proved extremely productive for DXB in making full on progress towards going past the pre-Covid traveller numbers. Image Credit: Ahmed Ramzan/Gulf News

Dubai: It’s official – Dubai has shot past the corresponding 2019 tally in passenger numbers passing through Dubai International Airport over the first six months of 2023.

During this period, 41.6 million visitors clocked in at DXB against the 41.3 million who did so during H1-2019. And compared to a year ago, the figures are even more striking. Last year same time, DXB had 27.9 million passengers.

The world’s busiest international airport has now raised its full-year 2023 forecast to 85 million passengers from the previous 83.6 million, just 1.6 per cent shy of DXB’s 2019 traffic of 83.6 million.

Paul Griffiths, CEO of Dubai Airports, said the airport remains optimistic about the demand levels and looks forward to a bumper winter season.

The April-June 2023 total provided all the boost DXB needed, with a 42.7 per cent year-on-year increase to 20.3 million fliers.

Dubai Airports H1-2023 Infographic
DXB clearly hit the highs through the first six months of 2023. Now, it's raised it's full-year forecasts too. Image Credit: Dubai Airport

“We started the second half with strong demand in July, and with the ongoing seasonal peak coinciding with the reopening of schools in August, we’re preparing for an exceptionally busy rest of the year,” said Griffiths.

May was the busiest month during Q2-23 with 6.9 million guests. The airport is now well on its way to achieving total recovery from the 18.2 million visitors in 2020 during the height of the COVID-19 disruptions.

“It’s been a rewarding first-half for Dubai International," said Griffiths. "Amidst increasing guest numbers, we take great pride in knowing we are continuously delivering with operational excellence and providing an exemplary guest experience."

DXB handled 201,800 flights in the first half, up 30.2 per cent y-o-y. And higher by 13 per cent compared to the same period in 2019.

A true connect
“Recent stories of our team delivering a unique guest experience at DXB include communicating with a guest with a hidden disability using a translator tool, working with our stakeholders to locate a lost passport minutes before the guest’s flight was due to depart, (and) helping a guest recover his lost wallet from his hotel after he cleared immigration,” says Paul Griffiths.

Top destinations to and from DXB

India remains in the lead as DXB’s top destination country, with 6 million visitors in the first half. Saudi Arabia follows with 3.1 million fliers, and those from the UK numbered 2.8 million. Other leading destinations include Pakistan (2 million), the US (1.8 million), Russia (1.3 million) and Germany (1.2 million).

London remained at the top of the list for city destinations, with 1.7 million travellers. This was followed by Mumbai with 1.2 million and Riyadh a close third with 1.2 million.

DXB connects 257 destinations across 104 countries through more than 91 international airlines.

More to follow...