Dubai is set to be home to the world’s biggest airport

Dubai is set to be home to the world’s biggest airport

Once completed, DWC will have the capacity to accommodate 160 million passengers a year

Dubai Airports, the airport authority that manages both Dubai International (DXB) and Al Maktoum International Airport, also known as Dubai World Central (DWC) has revealed that when DWC is finished, it'll be able to handle more than 160 million passengers a year.

That’s nearly 63 million more travellers than the world’s current busiest airport, Hartsfield–Jackson Atlanta International, handled in 2022 and nearly 100 million more than Dubai International. 

DXB is currently the world’s busiest airport outside of the US, while scheduled passenger services at DWC are limited to those provided by small selection of low-cost carriers that operate services mostly to Eastern Europe, Russia and Central Asia and all-business class carrier Beond, which flies direct to the Maldives. 

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During the recent Dubai Air Show, held at a purpose-built venue at Al Maktoum International Airport in 2023, offered insights into Dubai Airports’ long-term strategy. Dubai Airports CEO Paul Griffiths said the expansion would take place "at some stage during the 2030s".

Griffiths also commented about adopting a modular approach to gradually expand DWC on a timeline that might run into the 2050s. He said: “We are not planning an airport that has terminals. We’re going to completely change the business model for airports, make them actually far more intimate, and get rid of all the legacy processes that we’ve had to subject our customers to, for far too long.”

The airport will be the centrepiece of new development Dubai South. The new district, of which some pieces are already starting to take shape, will have eight neighbourhoods each allocated to a specific industry or activity, with a mix of residential and commercial areas.

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