Dubai International Airport

Dubai International Airport (مطار دبي الدولي) is an international airport serving Dubai, the largest city of the United Arab Emirates. It is a major aviation hub in the Middle East, and is the main airport in Dubai. In 2007, the airport handled over 29% of all flights entering and leaving the Middle East, and Africa Region.


The airport is a hub to Dubai's international airline, Emirates, as well as serving as a secondary hub for the Kuwait-based Jazeera Airways. Other smaller passenger and cargo airlines use the airport as a hub and these include Dolphin Air and Falcon Express Cargo Airlines. Airlines with secondary hubs at the airport include Royal Jordanian, British Gulf International Airlines, Iran Aseman Airlines, DAS Air Cargo, Air Blue, Iran Air and African Express Airways. It is a focus city for a number of airlines including; Biman Bangladesh Airlines, Air India, Pakistan International Airlines, and Jubba Airways.

The airport operates flights from Dubai to North America, Europe, South America, East Asia, Southwest Asia, South Asia, Australasia, and Africa. Dubai International Airport will be complemented by Al Maktoum International Airport, a new 140 km² airport that will help handle the influx of travelers well into the future.

Operated by the Department of Civil Aviation, it was the 27th busiest airport in the world in 2007, handling 34.34 million passengers. The airport targets 40 million for the year 2008. As of June 2008, the airport served over 100,000 passengers per day, and 120 airlines to over 205 destinations. An important contributor to the Dubai economy, 13,000 people are employed at the airport. The airport accounts for over S$5.5 billion in output.


Dubai International Airport has experienced extreme growth in the number of passengers, total freight, and total aircraft movements over the past decade. From 1997 to 2007, the number of annual passengers increased by 316%.
Statistics for Dubai International Airport
Year Total Passengers % Increase Freight (tons) Total Aircraft Movements
1997 9,108,766 13.7% 414,468 112,816
1998 9,732,202 6.8% 431,777 123,352
1999 10,754,824 10.5% 474,779 132,708
2000 12,320,660 14.6% 562,591 141,281
2001 13,508,073 9.6% 610,867 134,165
2002 15,973,391 18.3% 764,193 148,334
2003 18,062,344 13.1% 928,758 168,511
2004 21,711,883 13.7% 1,111,647 195,820
2005 24,782,288 14.1% 1,333,014 217,165
2006 28,788,726 16.2% 1,410,963 237,258
2007 34,340,000 19.3% n/a 260,530
2008-June 18,460,000 13.8% 831,978 135,145


As early as in the 1940s flying from Dubai was possible via flying boats operated by BOAC, operating the Horseshoe line from South-Africa via the Persian Gulf to Sydney. Construction of the airport was originally ordered by Sheikh Rashid bin Saeed Al Maktoum in 1959, who was the ruler of Dubai at that time. It officially opened in 1960, at which time it was able to manage aircraft the size of a Douglas DC-3 on a 1800 m. long runway made of compacted sand. Three turning-areas, an apron and small terminal completed the airport that was constructed by Costain. In May 1963 construction of a 9.200 ft (2804 m.) asphalt runway started. This new runway, alongside the original sand runway and taxi-strip opened in May 1965, together with several new buildings and extension of the terminal. The installation of the lighting system continued after official opening and was completed in August of that year. During the second half of the 1960s several extensions, equipment-upgrades like VOR and ILS as well as new buildings were realized.

Expansion continued in the early 1970s including ILS Class II equipment, lengthening existing runway to 12.500 ft, installation of NDB, diesel generators, taxi-ways etc. All this work made reception of Boeing 747 and Concorde possible. Several extensions of runways and apron were carried out through the decade to meet growing demand.

In April 1984 a second runway was opened and several extensions and upgrades of terminal facilities and supporting systems were carried out. On 23 December 1980 the airport became ordinary member of the ACI


The airport is currently undergoing a major expansion with the construction of Terminal 3 and new 60 meter (197 ft) wide and longer runway. This expansion will make the airport Airbus A380-compatible.

The airport will also undergo an expansion to allow two stations of the Red Line of the Dubai Metro to be built within the complex. One station will be constructed in Terminal 1 and the other in Terminal 3. The Metro system is not expected to be fully operational until 2012.

Dubai's government has announced the construction of a new airport in Jebel Ali termed Al Maktoum International Airport. It is expected upon completion to be the fourth largest airport in the world by physical size, though not by passenger metrics. Construction is expected to finish by the year 2017. On completion, Dubai International Airport is expected to be able to accommodate up to 70 million passengers.

Airlines and destinations

Destinations by Region

Destinations by Airlines

Terminal 1

  • Aeroflot (Moscow-Sheremetyevo)
  • Aeroflot-Don (Rostov, Sochi)
  • Aerosvit Airlines (Kiev-Boryspil)
  • Afriqiyah Airways (Tripoli)
  • Air Algérie (Algiers)
  • Air Astana (Almaty, Astana)
  • AirBaltic (Riga) [begins 24 October]
  • Air China (Athens [Ends Winter Season], Beijing)
  • Air France (Paris-Charles de Gaulle)
  • Air India (Chennai, Cochin, Delhi, Mumbai, Trivandrum)
    • Air India Express (Ahmedabad, Amritsar, Chennai, Delhi, Goa, Hyderabad, Jaipur, Calicut, Cochin, Lucknow, Mangalore, Mumbai, Nagpur, Pune, Trichy, Trivandrum)
    • Indian Airlines (Bangalore, Calicut, Chennai, Delhi, Goa, Hyderabad, Jaipur, Mumbai, Pune)
  • Alitalia (Rome-Fiumicino)
  • Aria Air (Bandar Abbas)
  • Ariana Afghan Airlines (Kabul)
  • Armavia (Yerevan)
  • Austrian Airlines (Vienna)
  • Azerbaijan Airlines (Baku)
  • Bahrain Air (Bahrain)
  • Best Air (Dhaka)
  • Biman Bangladesh Airlines (Chittagong, Dhaka, Sylhet, London-Heathrow, Rome-Fiumicino)
  • British Airways (London-Heathrow)
  • Bulgaria Air (Sofia)
  • Caspian Airlines (Abadan, Ahwaz)
  • Cathay Pacific (Bahrain, Bangkok-Suvarnabhumi, Hong Kong, Mumbai)
  • China Southern Airlines (Beijing, Guangzhou, Lagos)
  • Cyprus Airways (Bahrain, Larnaca)
  • Daallo Airlines (Djibouti)
  • Delta Air Lines (Atlanta)
  • Donbassaero (Donetsk, Odessa)
  • EgyptAir (Alexandria-Nozha, Cairo)
  • Emirates Airline (Abidjan, Accra, Addis Ababa, Ahmedabad, Amman, Athens, Auckland, Bahrain, Bangalore, Bangkok-Suvarnabhumi, Beijing, Beirut, Birmingham, Brisbane, Cairo, Calicut, Cape Town, Casablanca, Chennai, Christchurch, Cochin, Colombo, Damascus, Damman, Dar es Salaam, Delhi, Dhaka, Doha, Düsseldorf, Entebbe, Frankfurt, Glasgow-International, Guangzhou, Hamburg, Hong Kong, Houston-Intercontinental, Hyderabad, Islamabad, Istanbul-Atatürk, Jakarta, Jeddah, Johannesburg, Karachi, Khartoum, Kolkata, Kuala Lumpur, Kuwait City, Lagos, Lahore, Larnaca, London-Gatwick, London-Heathrow, Los Angeles [begins 26 October 2008], Luqa, Malé, Manchester, Manila, Mauritius, Melbourne, Milan-Malpensa, Moscow-Domodedovo, Mumbai, Munich, Muscat, Nagoya-Centrair, Nairobi, New York-JFK, Newcastle, Nice, Osaka-Kansai, Paris-Charles de Gaulle, Perth, Peshawar, Rome-Fiumicino, Riyadh, Sana'a, San Francisco [begins 15 December 2008], São Paulo-Guarulhos, Seoul-Incheon, Seychelles, Shanghai-Pudong, Singapore, Sydney, Tehran-Imam Khomeini, Toronto-Pearson, Tripoli, Trivandrum, Tunis, Venice, Vienna, Zürich)

Emirates Airline will move operations to Terminal 3 on 14 October 2008

Terminal 2

Terminal 3

Terminal 3 will be completely dedicated to Emirates Airline. The terminal was meant to open in May 2008 but, due to project delays, the terminal will partly open in October 2008.

Emirates operations from Terminal 3 will be phased in commencing on 14 October 2008. During the first week of the phase-in, all Emirates flights to and from the Americas and GCC countries will depart and arrive at Terminal 3. In the second phase, all Emirates flights to and from the Middle East and Africa will be added to the T3 slate of destinations. During the third phase, Emirates flights to and from Europe will arrive and depart at Terminal 3, with all other Emirates flights (South Asia, East Asia and Australia) will be added during the fourth phase, all four phases are expected to be completed by December 2008.

Cargo airlines


  • On 3 July, 1988, Iran Air Flight 655, which was on a Tehran-Bandar Abbas-Dubai route, was shot down by USS Vincennes between Bandar Abbas and Dubai. 290 people were killed in this incident.
  • On 28 July 2001, a man named Djamel Beghal was arrested at Dubai International Airport while transferring from a flight from Pakistan to a flight to Europe. Beghal admitted to being part of the Paris embassy attack plot to UAE interrogators. The Al-Qaeda suspect was taken to France, where he recanted parts of his statement. The plot was dismantled by French, Belgian, and Dutch authorities.
  • Part of the airport's Terminal 3 collapsed on September 28, 2004 during the construction phase.
  • On 17 February 2007, a Novair A330-200 made an emergency landing in an airport in the United Arab Emirates. The plane was flying from Phuket, Thailand to Copenhagen, Denmark with mainly Danish passengers. After takeoff from a scheduled intermediate landing in Dubai, the captain felt some strange vibrations in one of the engines and decided to shut it down. The landing went smoothly and no one was injured.
  • 12 March 2007: Biman Bangladesh Airlines Flight BG006 (LHR-DXB-DAC), carrying 236 passengers and crew, the nose gear of the Airbus A310-300 collapsed while accelerating down the runway. Fourteen people suffered minor injuries in the accident at Dubai International Airport. The aircraft came to rest at the end of the runway and was evacuated, but crippled the only active runway and forced the airport to close for eight hours, affecting 71 flights.
  • Hijackings: 2 with a total of 1 fatality.


See also


External links

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