Emirates expects to fly 70 million passengers in 2020

RetailME Bureau

Emirates Airline, a strategic partner of the Dubai Festivals and Retail Establishment (DFRE) and long-standing supporter of Dubai Summer Surprises, has registered a successful summer period with passenger numbers showing a healthy increase during the Duba i Summer Surprises (DSS) period.

According to the airline, it has recorded a 5% increase year-on-year during the DSS period.

“It reinforces the fact that Dubai – thanks to the work and promotional initiatives from our partners at DFRE – has become more and more a year round visitor destination,” says Majid Al Mualla, senior divisional senior vice-president of commercial operations, Emirates.

With more destinations being added to Emirates global network every year – increasing from 125 to 140 in 2014 alone – the opportunity to promote Dubai as a destination grows year on year, as per the airline.

“In the GCC we have seen the growth mainly come from GCC and neighbouring countries including Kuwait, Yemen, Qatar, Oman and Bahrain.  We have seen very strong numbers from Kuwait with a 25 per cent year on year increase in the number of passengers travelling to Dubai,” says Mualla.

He added that growth in non-GCC markets for Emirates Airline has been an important trend this year.

“In the past Dubai was always considered too hot for summer visitors from around the world – but the greater influx of European, Asian and African visitors demonstrates that the promotion of Dubai as a year round vacation destination is clearly working,” Mualla says.

He believes that Dubai will easily cross its target of 20 million visitors by 2020, with the added catalyst of hosting EXPO 2020.

“EXPO 2020 is a genuine game changing initiative for Dubai that will ensure a stronger focus than ever before on this dynamic, visionary city.  Emirates Airline is proud to have the opportunity to play an integral role in communicating Dubai as the host city throughout our global network and to have the opportunity to bring millions of visitors to Dubai to experience the EXPO,” he adds.

Mualla says the airline has reached 40 million passengers per year, and by the time of EXPO 2020 the estimate is that the airline will be flying 70 million passengers every year.

DFRE is an agency of the Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing.