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Dubai Snatches Back Crown as World’s Busiest International Airport as Recovery Continues

Dubai Snatches Back Crown as World’s Busiest International Airport as Recovery Continues

Dubai International Airport (DXB) snatched back the title of the worlds busiest international airport in October in the latest sign of post-pandemic recovery. Dubai had long held the title of the world’s busiest international airport before the pandemic but had fallen down the rankings as travel restrictions crippled demand.

According to aviation consultancy OAG, in October Dubai overtook Amsterdam Schipol which had briefly held the title of the world’s busiest airport for international traffic. The overall winner of the world’s busiest airport remains Atlanta Hartsfield, however, with more than double the number of seats as Dubai.

In fact, when domestic seat capacity is taken into account, Dubai doesn’t even make the top ten of the world’s busiest airports for October which is dominated by airports in the United States and China.

“Amsterdam Schiphol (AMS) position as the World’s Busiest International Airport was short-lived as Dubai (DXB) reclaims the top spot this month as capacity through the Middle East hub returns in earnest,” OAG said in a statement.

“Amsterdam moves into second place and Europe’s other big hubs are also catching up with Frankfurt (FRA) moving into 3rd place and London Heathrow (LHR) into 4th.”

Heathrow is quickly adding back capacity after some of the strictest travel restrictions in Europe were lifted over the last few months. The reopening of the United States to travellers from Europe and UK is likely to supercharge the recovery of Heathrow and other European hub airports in the coming months.

Dubai has been helped by the recovery of its biggest airline – Emirates – which has already restored 90 per cent of its network and hopes to have reached nearly three-quarters of its pre-pandemic capacity by the end of 2021.

The Dubai to Riyadh route is the second busiest airline route in the world in October, while Dubai to London Heathrow takes third place according to OAG. Surprisingly, Antalya in Turkey to Moscow Sheremetyevo was the busiest international airline route in the world in October.

Last week, Emirates announced plans to hire as many as 6,000 extra staff over the next six months to keep up with demand. The airline is already on the hunt of 3,000 new cabin crew and 600 pilots.

Dubai International Airport didn’t make the top ten of world’s most punctual airports, while Emirates also failed to make the OAG list of world’s most punctual airlines in October.

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