Dubai airport to challenge Heathrow as world’s busiest hub

The airport is now the world’s second busiest for international traffic, exceeding Paris’s Charles de Gaulle and Frankfurt Airport

Hind Mustafa - Al Arabiya News
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Passenger traffic at Dubai International Airport exceeded that of Paris’s Charles de Gaulle and Frankfurt Airport in 2013, and is shortly expected to surpass London’s Heathrow to become the world’s busiest airport.

The number of passengers going through the airport increased 15.2 percent in 2013, airport authorities said, according to Reuters.

The airport is now the world’s second busiest for international traffic. In December alone, over 6 million passengers passed through the airport for the first time, marking an increase of 13.6 percent from 2012.

Last year, Heathrow’s traffic increased by 3.4 percent, to 72.3 million people, showed data released by the airport, according to Reuters.

However “Heathrow faces severe capacity constraints being, in effect, full. Potential growth has to await the outcome of a Government sponsored review of new runway options for the London area. The answers will not be known until later next year,” John Strickland, an aviation consultant, told Al Arabiya News.

Dubai airport is home to Dubai flagship carrier Emirates - the largest airline in terms of international traffic – which in 2013 increased its passenger numbers to 66.4 million, up from 57.7 million the year before, U.S.-based news agency Bloomberg reported.

Dubai’s main airport is being expanded to be able to serve 90 million travelers per year. In October last year, Dubai opened its new al-Maktoum passenger terminal, designed to serve 150 million people, with a capacity of 200 million.

Aircraft traffic at Dubai’s main airport increased 7.5 percent, reaching 369,953, compared to 469,552 at London’s Heathrow, added Bloomberg.

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