Dubai Intl Airport retains position as world's busiest for international passenger traffic

Dubai International airport will keep the crown of the world's busiest airport by international traffic for the second consecutive year in 2015. In 2014, Dubai airport overtook London's Heathrow to become the world's busiest airport. In 2015, Heathrow handled 69.76 million international passengers. Dubai airport's latest data shows that passenger traffic rose to 6.01 million passengers in November from 5.57 million a year earlier, taking the total so far in 2015 to 70.96 million. It confirms that Dubai airport's 11-month passenger traffic is higher than Heathrow's full year traffic.

Figures show that the Dubai airport witnessed an average growth of around 6.5 million passengers a month in 2015 for 11 months. December was extremely busy for the airport and it is expected to cross the 77 million mark for 2015. Paul Griffiths, CEO of Dubai Airports, said in a statement: "We are very pleased with the growth in passenger traffic at DXB in 2015 during which the airport registered an average monthly traffic of nearly 6.5 million customers. We are sure the seasonal peaks that we experienced in December will help round off the year with an impressive annual figure."

A senior aviation analyst said Dubai International looks poised to cement its place as the world's number one airport and the rise in traffic in November demonstrates its strength and diversity.

"The airport looks primed to hold onto the number one crown and significantly expand its capabilities with the opening of a new concourse later this year," Saj Ahmad, chief analyst at Strategic Aero Research, told Khaleej Times. In November, the Subcontinent recorded the largest increase in total passenger numbers spurred by growth in traffic and launch of new flights, including SpiceJet's services to Kozhikode and Amritsar; followed by the GCC, Western Europe and North America.

The strongest markets in terms of percentage growth were Eastern Europe, North America, driven mainly by Emirates' expanding network to destinations in the US, and the GCC (16.9 per cent), with Muscat, Doha and Jeddah topping destinations with highest growth during the month. Aircraft movements in November increased by 4.2 per cent to 33,787 from 32,424 recorded during the same month in 2014. The year-to-date movements totalled 371,103 in November 2015, a robust growth of 13.8 per cent from 323,203 recorded during the first 11 months of 2014. Dubai International handled 218,323 tonnes of cargo in November, an increase of 3.8 per cent compared to 210,251 tonnes recorded during the same month in 2014. The year-to-date freight volumes reached 2,287,167 tonnes compared to 2,217,135 tonnes handled during the corresponding period in 2014, an increase of 3.2 per cent.

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