Al Maktoum International Airport
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Al Maktoum International Airport
Al Maktoum International Airport


Mar ?l Makt?m al-Duwal?
Maktoum Airport.jpg
Airport typePublic
OwnerGovernment of Dubai
OperatorDubai Airports Company
LocationJebel Ali, United Arab Emirates
Opened27 June 2010[1]
Hub for
Time zoneUAE Standard Time (UTC+04:00)
Elevation AMSL170 ft / 52 m
Coordinates24°53?17.80?N 55°9?37.36?E / 24.8882778°N 55.1603778°E / 24.8882778; 55.1603778Coordinates: 24°53?17.80?N 55°9?37.36?E / 24.8882778°N 55.1603778°E / 24.8882778; 55.1603778
OMDW is located in United Arab Emirates
Location in the UAE
Direction Length Surface
m ft
12/30 4,500 14,764 Asphalt
13/31 1,838 6,020 Asphalt
Source: UAE AIP[3]

Al Maktoum International Airport (IATA: DWC, ICAO: OMDW), also known as Dubai World Central[4], is an international airport in Jebel Ali, 37 kilometres (23 mi) southwest[3] of Dubai, United Arab Emirates that opened on 27 June 2010.[1] It is the main part of Dubai South, a planned residential, commercial and logistics complex.

The airport will contain transport modes, logistics and value-added services, including manufacturing and assembly, in a single free economic zone.[5][clarification needed] It will cover an area of 14,000 hectares (35,000 acres). The airport has a projected annual capacity of 12 million tonnes (12,000,000 long tons; 13,000,000 short tons) of freight and between 160 million[6] and 260 million passengers.[7] As of May 2019, only a handful of airlines operate passenger services out of Al Maktoum International Airport.



The 4,500 m × 60 m (14,800 ft × 200 ft) runway was completed in 600 days and subsequently underwent tests over the following six to eight months in order to fulfil its CAT III-C requirements.[8] Construction of the airport's cargo terminal, the Al Maktoum Airport Cargo Gateway, which cost around US$75 million, was 50% complete by the end of 2008.[9]

During the first phase of the project, the airport is planned to handle around 200,000 t (200,000 long tons; 220,000 short tons) of cargo per year, with the possibility of increasing to 800,000 t (790,000 long tons; 880,000 short tons).[9] The passenger terminal at this phase is designed to have a capacity of 5 million passengers per year.[10] It was planned to be the largest airport in the world in terms of freight handled, moving up to 12 million tonnes (12,000,000 long tons; 13,000,000 short tons) per year in 2013.[needs update][9]

The project was originally expected to be fully operational by 2017, although the 2007-2012 global financial crisis subsequently postponed the completion of the complex to 2027. Previous working names for the airport complex have included "Jebel Ali International Airport", "Jebel Ali Airport City", and "Dubai World Central International Airport". It has been named after the late Sheikh Maktoum bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the former Ruler of Dubai.[] The total cost of the airport has been estimated by the Dubai government to be $82 billion.[11]


Al Maktoum International Airport opened on 27 June 2010 with one runway and only cargo flights.[1] The first flight into the airport occurred on 20 June 2010, when an Emirates SkyCargo Boeing 777F landed after a flight from Hong Kong. The flight served as a test for various functions such as air traffic control, movement of aircraft on the ground, and security. According to Emirates, the flight was an "unmitigated success".[12]

On 24 February 2011, the airport was certified to handle passenger aircraft with up to 60 passengers.[13] The first passenger aircraft touched down on 28 February 2011, an Airbus A319CJ.[14] The airport officially opened for passenger flights on 26 October 2013 with Nas Air and Wizz Air as the two carriers to operate from the airport.[15]

In the first quarter of 2014, 102,000 passengers went through the airport.[16] At the time of its opening, three cargo service airlines served Al Maktoum International Airport, including RUS Aviation, Skyline Air and Aerospace Consortium. Fifteen additional airlines have signed a contract to operate flights to the airport.[17]

Passenger numbers in the first half of 2016 totalled 410,278, up from 209,989 in the first half of 2015.[18]


The airport will be the largest component of Dubai World Central, with a surface area of more than 280 square kilometres (110 sq mi). If completed as planned, the airport will have an annual cargo capacity of 12 million tonnes (12,000,000 long tons; 13,000,000 short tons), and a passenger capacity of up to 260 million people per year. In the future it will handle 851 million passengers[dubious ] This would make it the largest airport in the world in both physical size and passenger volume.[19][20]

Al Maktoum International Airport intends to handle all types of aircraft.[21] Up to four aircraft will be able to land simultaneously.

The airport will include:

  • Three passenger terminals, including two luxury facilities; one dedicated to Emirates, the second to other carriers, and the third dedicated to low-cost carriers
  • Multiple concourses
  • Executive and royal jet centres
  • Hotels and shopping malls
  • Support and maintenance facilities: the region's only hub for A-, B-, and C-checks on all aircraft up to A380 specifications

Al Maktoum International Airport will be linked to the existing Dubai International Airport by a proposed high-speed express rail system, and served by the Dubai Metro and a dedicated Dubai World Central light railway.

The airport was initially planned to have six runways, but this number was reduced to five 4,500 m (14,800 ft) parallel runways in April 2009, with a large passenger complex in the middle. Furthermore, each runway would have extended asphalted pathways on either side which would allow aircraft to by-pass other runways and taxiways without disturbing aircraft movements of these runways and taxiways. Dubai expects an exponential rise in passenger traffic over its skies, with the presumption that it will become the primary air hub for transiting travelers from the Asia-Pacific Region, South Asia, Greater Middle East, Africa, Europe, and Australia (for the Kangaroo route: Australia to Britain and back).

Several large warehouses and hangars line the westernmost part of the airport. These interlinked hangars will stretch from end-to-end of the westernmost runway. Each of these is capable of housing A380 aircraft.

The airport will complement Dubai International Airport, some 40 km (25 mi) away. It is surrounded by a logistics hub, a luxurious golf resort, a trade and exhibition facility with 3 million square metres of exhibition space, a commercial district, and a residential and hotel area.[22]

The Dubai World Central will have a total of 100,000 parking slots for automobile vehicles for its employees, Dubai residents, tourists, and other users.[23]

Airlines and destinations




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  20. ^ Zeidan, Ghaleb (2009, November 9) Dubai Aviation City Corporation Executive Chairman outlines Dubai's strategic focus on transport and logistics at SITL Dubai 2009
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  39. ^ KirubelS. "Cargo Schedule - Ethiopian Airlines".

External links

Media related to Al Maktoum International Airport at Wikimedia Commons

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