Tourism has continued to recover in Dubai, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), as the city welcomed more than 23.7 million visitors during 2022. Of these, 21.8 million arrived via Dubai’s airports, namely Dubai International Airport (DXB) and Al Maktoum International Airport (DWC).
Compared to last year, this represents an increase of 89% in total visitors, with the airports welcoming 81.3% more passengers. In 2021, 12.05 million travelers chose airports as their means of arriving in Dubai.
“The use of technologies such as artificial intelligence and the Internet of Things has allowed Dubai Airports to deliver exceptional digital services and a superior travel experience to all visitors, solidifying Dubai’s reputation as a top destination for tourism, business, and lifestyle,” said Mohammed Ahmed Al Marri, the Director General of General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs of Dubai.
The region was at the forefront of the World Cup-related travel boom, as football fans flocked to the Gulf states for the tournament held in Qatar, where limited accommodation spaces resulted in many fans staying in neighboring countries.
By the end of November 2022, Dubai Airports, the operator of DXB and DWC, had already indicated that strong tourism flows in Q3 2022 had forced them to reassess estimates for the company’s year-end passenger totals and raise them to 64.3 million. However, not all of the flyers who landed at either DXB or DWC would exit the airports, with over 63% of their total passengers during 2018 being transiting travelers.