Record-breaking March for Dubai Airports as passenger traffic takes off to 5.8m

Year-to-date passenger numbers up 20.6% over Q1 2012; fourth consecutive month of 5m plus figures

Dubai International continued its draw as the world’s second busiest international hub, registering a record 5.8 million passengers in March according to the monthly traffic report issued by Dubai Airports.

According to the report, passenger traffic in March surged by 20.6 per cent – the highest since August 2012 – to 5,846,297 compared to 4,848,320 in March 2012; this is the fourth consecutive month with more than five million passengers and a double-digit growth.

The strong showing has boosted the year-to-date traffic to nearly 16.5m, up 15.6 per cent compared with 14.2m recorded during Q1 of 2012.

The largest increase in total passenger number was recorded on the Western European routes, with destinations in the region registering the largest increase in total passenger numbers (+227,830), followed by the AGCC (209,737), and the Indian subcontinent (+202,703).

Growth remained subdued (+2,532) on South American routes while Middle Eastern routes registered moderate growth (+36,479).

In terms of percentage growth, Eastern Europe was the fastest-expanding market (+67.9 per cent), which was further fuelled by increased connectivity via Emirates airline’s launch of new services to Poland and flydubai’s service to Macedonia, followed by Asia Pacific (26.5 per cent).

Dubai International recorded a total of 31,713 aircraft movements in March, up 8.3 per cent compared to 29,276 in March 2012.

The year-to-date movements increased 5.9 per cent to reach 91,130, compared to 86,014 recorded during the first three months in 2012.

Cargo volumes also surged in March with Dubai International recording 213,748 tonnes of cargo, an increase of 14.7 per cent compared to 186,417 tonnes in March 2012.

The year-to-date cargo traffic grew by 13 per cent reaching 584,847 tonnes compared to 517,440 tonnes during the corresponding period in 2012.

Paul Griffiths, CEO of Dubai Airports said: “We have had a very successful first quarter highlighted by record growth and the opening of the world’s first purpose built A380 facility.

“I am particularly pleased that we are now not only the world’s second busiest international hub but also one of the most efficient with 208 passengers [March 2013] per aircraft movement thanks to our growing number of A380 operations, which led the world in 2012 with 7,259 A380 flights to 28 destinations.”

He added that traffic looked set to continue its upsurge in the second quarter adding to the import of Dubai Airports’ on-going expansion projects at Dubai International.

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