History

Work to build Dubai International began on a vast expanse of a wasteland some four kilometres from what was then the edge of the city of Dubai.
2013

Passenger terminal at Al Maktoum International is opened by Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai.

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2013

Concourse A opens, boosting capacity at Dubai International to 75 million.

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2012
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Dubai International ends the year as the second busiest airport for international passengers with 57.6 million passengers.

Work begins on Concourse D, the new home to the more than 100 airlines that serve Dubai.

2010

Dubai Airports opens the first phase of Al Maktoum International at Dubai World Central for cargo operations on June 27.

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2009
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Passenger throughput surpasses the 40 million mark with traffic reaching 40.9 million in 2009, and Dubai International becomes the world’s fastest growing airport among top 50 major hubs.

Work begins on Concourse A, the world’s first-purpose built A380 facility for Emirates’ superjumbo fleet. The facility is expected to be ready by the end of 2012. Terminal 2 undergoes major refurbishment for the launch of flydubai, Dubai’s own low-cost airline.

2008

Dubai Airports opened the much-awaited Dubai International Terminal 3 for the exclusive use of Emirates airline.

The flawless opening of the world’s largest single terminal not only expanded Dubai International’s capacity to 60 million but  won the airport accolades from passengers and the aviation industry worldwide.

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2007
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Department of Civil Aviation is restructured, leading to the formation of Dubai Airports – responsible for the development and management of Dubai’s airports and Dubai Civil Aviation Authority – the local aviation regulatory body.

2002

Dubai International was ranked the second fastest growing airport in the world according to ACI traffic statistics.

The facility handled around 18 million passengers in 2003 and was established as the aviation hub of the Middle East.

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2000
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The opening of Sheikh Rashid Terminal, also known as Terminal 1, marked the start of a new chapter in Dubai’s aviation history.

Built as part of the first phase of the general expansion project at a cost of AED2 billion, the terminal increased the airport’s capacity from 10 million to 23 million.

1998

Terminal 2 was opened, increasing Dubai International’s capacity by two million passengers per annum.

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1988
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Passenger throughput at the airport increased to 4.3 million and more than doubled in a decade to 9.7 million by 1998.

1984

The second runway, equipped with the latest meteorological, airfield lighting and instrument landing systems to give the airport a Category II classification, was opened in April 1984.

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1980
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On December 23, 1980, Dubai International became an ordinary member of the Airports Council International (ACI) as well as the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO).

1970

The 1970s witnessed many developments across Dubai International

Starting with a new three-storey terminal building, a new control tower, additional taxiways, lengthening of the runway, extension of aprons, airfield lighting and landing instrument.

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1969
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Dubai International accommodated nine airlines serving a total of 20 destinations.

1963

Work to build an asphalt runway began. It was opened in 1965 together with numerous other newly-built or refurbished facilities.

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1960
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The airport was opened and was capable of handling aircraft up to the size of a DC-3.