Dubai International (DXB) has climbed to the No. 1 airport in the world for yearly international passengers, reporting that 70,475,636 travelers passed through the United Arab Emirates facility in 2014. This number reflects a 6.1 percent growth over 2013 and surpasses London Heathrow Airport, which had 68.1 million passengers.
“This historic milestone is the culmination of over five decades of double-digit average growth that were inspired by the vision of the late Sheikh Rashid Bin Saeed Al Maktoum,” said HH Sheikh Ahmed Bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman of Dubai Airports. “The shared goal is to make Dubai a global center of aviation and we are nearing that goal thanks to an open skies policy, a friendly business environment, Dubai’s growing attractiveness as a center for trade, commerce and tourism, growing network connectivity due to the rapid expansion of Emirates and flydubai and timely investment in aviation infrastructure.”
Another reason for Dubai’s rise to the top is the ongoing increase in the number of wide bodied aircraft servicing the airport. The numbers of passengers per flight increased 5.1 percent to 208.3 passengers during 2014.
The top market for growth in passenger volumes during 2014 was Western Europe (+1,192,831 passengers) closely followed by the Indian Subcontinent (+936,449 passengers), Asia (+716,180) and North America (+432,597). In terms of percentage growth* in 2014 Eastern Europe (+21.0 per cent) was the strongest market followed by North America (18.6 per cent), Asia (12.6 per cent), Australasia (9.2 per cent) and Western Europe (8.8 per cent).
“Much like 2014, 2015 promises to be another eventful year featuring more record passenger numbers and facility upgrades including the opening of Concourse D which will boost Dubai International’s capacity to 90 million,” said Paul Griffiths, CEO of Dubai Airports. “Today we are also releasing our projections for 2015 traffic at Dubai International, which forecasts 79 million passengers. We will have more flights connecting more people to more destinations. And we will be fully focused on rolling out technology, new F&B concepts and service initiatives that further enhance the passenger experience.”