First Flights Due at Dubai Al Maktoum Airport


By Dave Lewis

In two days’ time, the world’s biggest airport will finally see its first commercial passenger flights take off and land. 

Variously called Jebel Ali International Airport, Jebel Ali Airport City and Dubai World Central International Airport during the construction phases, it will open with a new name; Dubai World Central – Al Maktoum International Airport and will be the focus of a huge residential, commercial and logistical complex dubbed Dubai World Central.   Today, the complex is a hive of activity but is still massively underutilised.

Real estate agents, surrounded by an air of optimism, take business managers around the light industrial, hi-tech and office units hoping to fill the currently almost completely empty zones. The story is slightly different in the residential areas where many properties have been sold but remain unoccupied until there is a sound economic reason to live there.

All this is likely to change this weekend as five airlines launch ten routes to the airport from Germany, Eastern Europe and other cities on the Arabian Peninsula. Condor, Jazeera, Wizz Air, Nas Air and Wizz Air Ukraine will lead the vanguard of airlines hopefully soon to be joined by BA, Emirates, Qantas and other top names.   It’s hoped that a snowball effect will ensue, allowing the massive capacity of the airport to be rapidly filled. 160m passengers will eventually file through the airport each year with the world’s biggest planes able to land there on a runway specially constructed for the Airbus A380.

Four planes will be able to land simultaneously with passengers taken through one of the three ultramodern terminals, one reserved exclusively for Emirates customers. – See more at