Dubai International (DXB) has once again upwardly revised its 2023 forecast of passenger traffic from 83.6 million to 85 million.

Paul Griffiths, CEO of Dubai Airports, said that that number would therefore be “just 1.6 per cent shy of DXB’s annual traffic in 2019.”

“We started the second half with strong demand in July, and with the ongoing seasonal peak coinciding with the reopening of schools in August, we’re preparing for an exceptionally busy rest of the year,” said Griffiths.

DXB’s passenger traffic for the first half of this year already surpassed the corresponding period of 2019. It welcomed 41.6 million guests in H1, just over 100 per cent compared to the traffic recorded during the first six months of 2019, and 49.1 per cent more compared to the 27.9 million guests it hosted in H1 2022.

In the second quarter of this year, DXB’s traffic surged by 42.7 per cent year-on-year to reach 20.3 million. May was the busiest month within that quarter with 6.9 million guests passing through the airport.

India remained DXB’s top destination country in terms of traffic with 6 million guests in the first half, followed by Saudi Arabia with 3.1 million guests, and the UK with 2.8 million guests. Other leading destinations include Pakistan (2 million), the US (1.8 million), Russia (1.3 million) and Germany (1.2 million).

The list of top city destinations was led by London with 1.7 million guests, followed by Mumbai (1.2 million) and Riyadh (1.2 million).

DXB is connected to 257 destinations across 104 countries, through more than 91 international airlines.

DXB handled a total of 201,800 flights in the first half, up 30.2 per cent year-on-year, and up 13 per cent over the same period in H1 2019. The average number of guests per flight during the first half of this year reached 214 while the load factor was 77 per cent.

The airport also handled approximately 37.2 million bags with 92 per cent of all baggage delivered within 45 minutes to customers.

“It’s been a rewarding first half for Dubai International and amidst increasing guest numbers, we take great pride in knowing we are continuously delivering with operational excellence and providing an exemplary guest experience,” added Griffiths.

For the year of 2022, DXB retained its position as the world’s busiest international airport for the ninth consecutive year, according to the Airports Council International (ACI).

(Image: Supplied by Dubai Airports)