Dubai expects FIFA World Cup to increase pax demand ‘three-fold’ in coming weeks

Dubai Airports anticipates a “massive surge” in passenger numbers at Dubai World Central Airport (DWC) with the Match Day Shuttle Flights for the FIFA World Cup soccer competition scheduled to take off from November 20.  

Passenger demand at DWC airport is expected to increase “three-fold over the coming weeks” between November 20 and December 18, 2022, when the international tournament is set to take place, Dubai Airports, the airport authority which owns and operates the two largest airports in the United Arab Emirates, said in a statement released on November 15, 2022. Passenger numbers at the airport are anticipated to exceed 494,000 during the final three months of the year. 

“A spike in demand of this magnitude would pose a challenge for any airport, but we have had some recent practice,” Dubai Airports chief executive Paul Griffiths said. 

Dubai Airports “fully operational” 

However, the CEO confirmed that the airport, which has capacity to serve around 26.5 million passengers per year, is already fully operational and will be capable of serving the additional flow of air travelers. 

The FIFA World Cup will provide Dubai Airports with the chance to showcase DWC’s unique selling points, quick turnaround time for airlines, and “a full-fledged facility designed for quick and easy travel with minimum walking distances among others,” Griffiths added. 

Aiming to ensure on-time departures, DWC airport will deploy an additional frontline team at every service touchpoint. 

“More than 60 check-in counters, 21 boarding gates, 60 passport control counters (departures and arrivals) and 10 smart gates, and 4 baggage belts on arrivals will be operational throughout the period to cope with the anticipated surge in demand,” the statement added. 

It is estimated that from the launch day of the event until December 19, 2022, 120 shuttle flights operated by flydubai and Qatar Airways will fly in and out of DWC each day.  

 

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