Credit By: What’s On Dubai
Dubai International Airport (DXB) is poised for a mega expansion of AED 6 billion to AED 10 billion ($1.6 billion to $2.7 billion) over the next 5 to 7 years.
The expansion initiative encompasses the following key components:
- Transformation of DXB into an intelligent airport.
- Forge new collaborations.
- Enhance passenger experience with additional lounges.
- Optimize areas to streamline passenger flow.
- Restructure operations to improve gate management.
- Deploy advanced technological solutions for efficiency and passenger services.
The overarching plan aims to drive growth for the next 10 to 15 years until the airport reaches its maximum capacity. Subsequently, expansion efforts will shift to Dubai’s second hub, Al Maktoum International Airport (DWC).
While DXB currently accommodates 118 to 120 million passengers, the second airport, Al Maktoum International Airport, can presently manage approximately 26.5 million passengers and has the potential to expand its capacity to 240 million after Phase 2 of its expansion.
DXB has also revised its forecast for the year, projecting an increase from 83.6 million to 85 million passengers, just 1.6% lower than its annual traffic in 2019.
During the first half of the current year, Dubai International Airport served 41.6 million passengers, surpassing the figures for the same period in 2019.
Noteworthy is Dubai’s aim to welcome 40 million tourists by 2030. By the end of 2023, DXB is set to have already catered to around 85 million passengers, highlighting its pivotal role as a global hub for transit traffic.
In a significant move, Saudi Arabian car rental and leasing company Lumi has confirmed its initial public offering (IPO) and listing of shares on the primary market of the Saudi stock exchange, Tadawul. Lumi, which aims to expand its market share, plans to float 30% of its issued share capital, equivalent to 16.5 million shares. The final offer price will be revealed on September 7 as Lumi aspires to make a mark in the car rental industry.
Riyadh Air, Saudi Arabia’s newest airline, is carving out a unique growth strategy under the leadership of CEO Tony Douglas. Instead of competing with established regional carriers like Qatar Airways, Emirates, and Etihad, Riyadh Air is focused on enhancing connectivity for travellers directly engaging with Saudi Arabia. This strategy aligns with the country’s broader push for tourism and global engagement. Set to launch in 2025, Riyadh Air is eyeing niche markets and destinations, while the existing flag carrier, Saudia, will cater to religious pilgrims visiting holy sites.
AviLease, a global aircraft lessor wholly owned by the Saudi sovereign fund Public Investment Fund, is set to acquire Standard Chartered’s aircraft leasing business, including Dublin-based Pembroke Group, in a $3.6 billion deal. This acquisition will bring AviLease closer to its goal of being among the top 10 global aircraft lessors. The combined platform will own and manage 167 modern, fuel-efficient aircraft, solidifying AviLease’s position in the aircraft leasing industry.
Expo Centre Sharjah is witnessing a substantial 63% increase in exhibitions for the fourth quarter of 2023 compared to the previous year. With 18 events lined up, the centre aims to contribute to economic growth and tourism and showcase Sharjah’s developmental progress. Events range from the Watch and Jewellery Middle East Show to the Sharjah International Book Fair, reinforcing Sharjah’s significance as an exhibition hub.
Almosafer, a Saudi Arabian travel company, has partnered with MoEngage, a customer engagement platform, to create personalized engagement strategies for its travellers. By leveraging MoEngage’s platform, Almosafer intends to craft relevant campaigns and optimize engagement efforts to enhance customer satisfaction and booking experiences.
Jordan’s tourism sector is experiencing remarkable growth, with a 75% increase in visitors arriving via low-cost airlines over the past seven months compared to the previous year. The country’s strategic agreements with five low-cost airlines have contributed to this surge, attracting tourists from 17 countries and 25 cities. Despite global challenges, Jordan has welcomed over 3.7 million visitors, registering a 51% increase and boosting its tourist income.
Hilton has introduced its luxury brand, Waldorf Astoria, to Egypt with the opening of Waldorf Astoria Cairo Heliopolis. As the first Waldorf Astoria property in Egypt, this move reflects Hilton’s commitment to expanding its luxury offerings to top destinations. With Egypt’s growing tourist numbers and Cairo’s central position for travellers exploring the country, Waldorf Astoria Cairo Heliopolis aims to provide a luxurious experience, including fully equipped meeting facilities.
Kuwait’s Director General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) anticipates a 13% increase in total passenger traffic to and from Kuwait International Airport in 2023, projecting 15.5 million passengers. The airport’s summer season is set to accommodate around 5.75 million passengers, reflecting the increased demand for air travel. This surge has prompted the DGCA to expect approximately 45,000 flights during the season, a 15% increase compared to the previous year.
Sunset Hospitality Group, based in Dubai, has introduced its new brand, Social Living Collection, with the launch of a property in Bodrum, Turkey. The brand focuses on curated lifestyle hotels and resorts worldwide, with the Bodrum property offering luxurious suites. Sunset Hospitality Group, established 11 years ago, operates in 15 countries.
The Ajman Department of Tourism Development has partnered with City University Ajman to foster cooperation, knowledge exchange, and expertise in community services and institutional experiences. City University Ajman will offer partial scholarships to Ajman tourism employees and their families as part of this collaboration. Ajman Tourism will facilitate volunteer opportunities for university students, promoting mutual learning and growth.
The Makkah buses project, initiated by the Royal Commission for Makkah City and Holy Sites, has proven highly successful during its trial period. Operating 1.5 million trips, the project has served over 80 million passengers, reducing traffic congestion and improving accessibility to critical areas, historical sites, and the Grand Mosque’s central area. The success of this project underscores the benefits of enhancing public transportation options in congested urban areas.