Abu Dhabi sees 32.3pc passenger growth
Abu Dhabi, December 22, 2008
Abu Dhabi International Airport witnessed a 32.3 per cent jump in it’s year-to-date (YTD) passenger growth in November with the airport handling 8,928,622 people during the period, according to the Abu Dhabi Airport Company (Adac).
The growth rates at Abu Dhabi airport demonstrate a continuing bucking of worldwide industry trends, an Adac official said, adding the traffic for November alone showed a significant growth with a passenger increase of 27.4 per cent over the same period last year.
While UAE National Day and the Eid Al Adha (Feast of Sacrifice) holidays supported an increase in passenger loads over the November period there was, of course, a peaked increase due to Hajj pilgrim traffic to and from Saudi Arabia – this becoming a significant driver of passenger loads for the month, the official said.
During the Hajj period, Abu Dhabi International Airport handled a total of 14,784 Hajjes (pilgrims) which increased passenger traffic to Saudi Arabia by 34.5 per cent. This moved the Kingdom into the third most served market from Abu Dhabi, in November.
Total passenger movement for the trailing twelve months (TTM), to the end of November, saw the airport handle 8,928,622 passengers.
Abu Dhabi Airport Company officials also remain confident that, for the period from January to December 2008, the airport remains on course to reach the nine million passengers per year milestone.
Cargo traffic at Abu Dhabi International Airport continued its steady growth through 2008 posting 14 per cent and 11.6 per cent for the YTD and the month of November respectively.
Aircraft movements saw similar growth rates with 14.4 per cent growth in the first 11 months and 11.8 per cent in November alone.
“The continued growth of the airport’s home airline, Etihad Airways, the national airline of the UAE, continues to be a significant driver in growing passenger traffic at Abu Dhabi International as well as increasing our efforts to increase frequencies and routes with other airlines,” said Rudy Vercelli, CEO of Adac.
“While we have welcomed six new airlines to Abu Dhabi airports in this calendar year alone, we are also working closely with existing partner airlines. Most recently, Singapore Airlines has announced an increase to a daily service between Abu Dhabi and Singapore, from March next year,” he added.
In data released alongside the traffic figures, ADAC also unveiled the top five most popular city destinations travelled from/to Abu Dhabi in November 2008. Doha topped the list followed by London, Cairo, Bahrain and Bangkok.
Despite airport closures in Thailand in November, Bangkok has recovered and remained a top five destination from Abu Dhabi.
In fact, of the top 15 destinations from Abu Dhabi Airport, only the Thailand passenger loads did not grow in November with Australia shooting into twelfth place with a very strong 80.6 per cent growth over the same month last year, the official added.-TradeArabia News Service