Transforming Dubai International into the world’s busiest aviation hub
In 1960, Dubai International (DXB) was founded as the city’s first airport, with a single 1,800 metre runway made of compacted sand. The airport had served mainly as a refuelling stop for planes up to the size of a DC-3.
Since then, Dubai’s leadership has driven the growth of DXB as an airport and the aviation sector as a whole. With a series of strategic expansion and development projects through the DAEP, the airport has grown in terms of passenger and cargo handling handling capacity, number of plane movements, the network of connected destinations, as well as operational efficiency. Two key projects were the additions of Terminal 2, which increased passenger capacity by 2 million, and then Terminal 3, which increased it to 60 million.
Today, DXB is the world’s number one airport in terms of international passenger traffic and number three in overall passenger traffic. In 2018, 63% of passengers transited through DXB, confirming the airport's position as one of the world's leading aviation hubs and a preferred transit point for international travellers and airlines alike. In terms of cargo, DXB is the sixth-busiest airport in the world, averaging 2.5 million tonnes of cargo annually.