Dubai International (DXB) retained its position as the world’s number one hub for international passengers by registering annual traffic of just over 78 million in 2015, according to a traffic report issued by operator Dubai Airports.
Boosted by the growth of some 100 airlines that connect Dubai International to more than 240 destinations around the world, most notably Emirates and flydubai, annual passenger traffic at DXB surged 10.7 per cent to reach a record 78,014,838 passengers in 2015 compared to 70,473,893 recorded during 2014.
Passenger numbers in December 2015 totalled 7,053,243, an increase of 8.5 per cent compared to 6,498,573 recorded during the same month in 2014, taking the average monthly traffic for the year to a record high of 6.5 million. It was the second time in the year after August when monthly traffic exceeded the 7 million mark.
Aircraft movements in 2015 reached 403,517, up 14.1 per cent compared to 353,507 movements recorded during 2014. Monthly aircraft movements in December totalled 35,575 compared to 33,595 movements during the same month in 2014, an increase of 5.9 per cent.
During the year DXB welcomed new airlines including Air Canada from Toronto, Eurowings from Cologne and China Southern from Wuhan, among others. A total of 12 new passenger destinations were also added thanks to the ongoing network expansion of Dubai-based airlines flydubai and Emirates.
A traditionally strong market, India retained its position as Dubai’s single largest destination country in 2015 with 10,391,376 passengers, a year on year growth of 17 per cent compared to 8,908,362 in 2014.
The UK was placed second with 5,682,307 passengers (+6 per cent) followed closely by Saudi Arabia at 5,466,358 (+12 per cent).
In terms of destination cities served by DXB, Doha retained the top spot with 2,782,600 passengers (+18 per cent) followed closely by London with 2,659,602 passengers (+1 per cent) and Mumbai with 2,214,221 passengers (+14 per cent).
Spurred by Emirates’ network expansion and ongoing growth on routes to the region, North America topped the regional markets in terms of percentage growth in 2015 (+25 per cent), followed by the GCC (+15 per cent), and Asia (+12 per cent).
Despite the transfer of all pure cargo operators from DXB to Dubai World Central, cargo volumes remained relatively steady with 2,506,092 tonnes of air freight passing through the airport during the year, up 3.4 per cent compared to 2,423,677 tonnes recorded during 2014. Monthly freight volumes in December totalled 218,408 up 5 per cent compared to 207,618 recorded during the same month in 2014.
Paul Griffiths, CEO, Dubai Airports said: “It’s another banner year for Dubai International where we broke records, engaged and entertained our customers in new ways, and retained our position as the world’s number one international hub.
“But we have no time to rest on our laurels as we are already busy testing the readiness our newest facility, the $1.2 billion Concourse D, which when it opens for our 70 plus airlines this quarter, will play a crucial role in helping us welcome millions of passengers in comfort and style.”