Dubai International (DXB) has recorded the busiest quarter since 2020 with 13.6 million passengers in Q1 2022 – an indication that the travel sector’s post-pandemic recovery is accelerating.

This is the second consecutive quarter that passenger traffic at DXB has surpassed the 10-million mark.

The airport reported 5.5 million passengers in March, taking its quarterly total to 13.6 million, up 15.7 per cent compared to 11.8 million passengers in the final quarter of 2021. By comparison, DXB recorded 5.7 million passengers in the first quarter of 2021.

DXB is currently connected to 193 destinations across 92 countries via 73 scheduled international carriers.

India held its longstanding position as DXB’s top destination country with passenger traffic reaching 1.6 million, followed by Saudi Arabia (1.1 million), Pakistan (997,000) and the UK (934,000 passengers). The top three cities in terms of passenger numbers were London (617,000 passengers), Riyadh (517,000), Jeddah (337,000), followed closely by Istanbul (324,000 passengers).

“DXB’s performance over the past successive quarters is nothing short of impressive and is a direct outcome of Dubai’s clear strategy and efforts to restore international air connectivity and mobility and lead the global aviation industry out of an unprecedented crisis. While the recovery was initially led by point-to-point traffic, which continues to exceed pre-pandemic levels, the opening of international travel across many key markets has enabled transfer traffic to rebound to 60 per cent of 2019 levels,” said Paul Griffiths, CEO of Dubai Airports.

The outlook for the year remains strong with annual traffic now projected to reach 58.3m million, exceeding initial forecasts by a significant margin, he added.