Two years after the coronavirus pandemic forced Dubai to suspend operations at its second airport, Dubai World Central (DWC) is set to reopen to passengers in May 2022.
“We’ve got to do some work on the runway at Dubai International Airport and with the reduction in capacity we’ll start to move operations back to DWC,” said Paul Griffiths, Chief Executive Officer, DWC. “But it’s really determined by the recovery of traffic overall,” he said. Dubai World Central will see airlines including Wizz Air, some FlyDubai operations and a few Russian airlines return, though Emirates will operate passenger flights solely out of the main Dubai International Airport for the foreseeable future.
Griffiths said he is optimistic the airline industry will recover by the start of 2025. “I’m hoping that might be a fairly conservative estimate,” he said. “We may well see a rather rapid recovery if the last few weeks are anything to go by.” To prepare for higher tourist arrivals, concourse A at Dubai International is set to reopen on 24 November, bringing the airport to full operation.
Griffiths has previously said that easing Covid-19 restrictions will boost travel through one of the world’s busiest hubs, and international visitor numbers may more than double next year.