Passenger flights begin at new Dubai airport

Wizz Air brings first flight to future super-airport

Dubai officially launched passenger services at its new Al Maktoum airport on Sunday following a delay of almost four years, Reuters news agency reports. Three airlines are operating from the airport initially.

European low-cost carrier Wizz Air brought the first commercial flight to Dubai’s second airport, with passengers stepping off the plane from Budapest. Flights are also expected from Jazeera Airways and Gulf Air.

Dubai is seen as a regional safe haven in an era of political unrest throughout the Middle East. Now the emirate is pushing stalled infrastructure and housing projects as it expects a tourism and economic boom.

“The opening of this facility signals the historic beginning of a long-term plan to build the largest airport in the world to accommodate tremendous passenger growth,” Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed al-Maktoum, chairman of Dubai Airports, said in a statement.

Parts of the airport are due to open in phases, eventually being able to accommodate up to 160 million passengers a year over the coming decade. The terminal was initially scheduled to launch in 2009.


[pictured: Graphic of Al-Maktoum International]