Abu Dhabi Airports anticipates welcoming over 22 million travellers by the end of 2023, emphasising that the inauguration of Terminal A solidifies the UAE capital’s status as a global gateway and a strategic hub for tourism and trade.
Speaking at the inaugural press round-table held at the new Terminal A building at Abu Dhabi International Airport, Elena Sorlini, Managing Director and Interim Chief Executive Officer, based her end-of-year traveller projections on the solid performance indicators achieved by the airport in recent months.
She added that winter is forecasted to see significant demand from travellers, coinciding with major events hosted by the country, such as the Formula 1 Etihad Airways Abu Dhabi Grand Prix and COP28. Around 2.29 million travellers are expected to be received in December alone.
The passenger numbers have witnessed a 49% growth since the beginning of October compared to the same period last year (2022). Sorlini highlighted that the current and upcoming winter seasons are expected to witness approximately 410 daily flights, compared to around 340 daily flights during last summer, representing an increase of over 20% between the two seasons.
In response to a question from the Emirates News Agency (WAM) regarding the specific time-frame to reach the full capacity of the new building, designed for 45 million passengers annually, Sorlini stated, “With the opening of the new terminal, we are experiencing rapid growth and are working to achieve our target as soon as possible, especially with Etihad Airways’ plan to triple the number of passengers by 2030.”
She pointed out that the top five destinations for Abu Dhabi International Airport in terms of passenger numbers are Mumbai, London, Kochi, Delhi, and Doha. Meanwhile, the leading destinations in terms of ticket sales are Mumbai, London, Doha, Delhi, and Kochi.
Terminal A will strengthen Abu Dhabi’s global standing as an aviation hub, capable of handling 79 planes at once and 11,000 passengers per hour. The increase in capacity allows for airlines to boost their presence in Abu Dhabi in response to growing demand.
With leading facilities, including biometric technology to streamline the screening and boarding process, 35,000 square metres of retail and F&B space and 163 outlets for passengers to shop, dine and enjoy, the new terminal will enhance the travel experience for all passengers, end to end, as well as travellers transferring to other destinations.