Dubai: The Ultimate Tourism and Travel Hub

flydubai records 285% growth in passenger numbers from the CIS and CEE markets, and 65% from the GCC in 2012

Saturday, January 19, 2013 — flydubai, Dubai’s innovative low-cost airline, has announced remarkable growth figures ahead of its inaugural flight celebrations to Malé, the capital of Maldives.

flydubai’s Chief Executive Officer, Ghaith Al Ghaith was joined at a press conference today by Laila Suhail, CEO, Dubai Events and Promotions Establishment (DEPE) and Hamad Bin Mejren, Executive Director, Business Tourism, Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DTCM) and Anita Mehra, Vice President – Marketing & Corporate Communications, Dubai Airports to highlight the incredible passenger growth recorded from Central & Eastern Europe (CEE) plus the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) and GCC markets.

The latest figures from Dubai International Airport reveal that passenger traffic from the CIS and Russia increased by 34% in Q3 2012 compared to the same period in 2011, in large part due to flydubai’s on-going expansion in this region.

Anita Mehra, Vice President – Marketing & Corporate Communications, Dubai Airports said: “flydubai’s growth, particularly within Russia and the CIS, has provided a tremendous boost to passenger traffic through linking Dubai to many cities in this region for the first time. The airline has played a key part in ensuring that passenger traffic at Dubai International is likely to have surpassed the projected target of 56.5 million passengers for the year as the world’s fourth busiest hub for international passengers achieved another month of double digit growth last November.” 

“Commencing today, the new Malé route will attract passengers from across the flydubai network, in particular those from the CIS, CEE and GCC. Dubai’s geographic advantages as a gateway between east and west, its established reputation as a popular year-round tourist destination, a financial centre and logistics hub, makes affordable travel across the airline’s route network accessible,” said Ghaith Al Ghaith, CEO, flydubai.

More than 40% of flydubai’s route development in 2012 concentrated on CEE and CIS cementing the airline’s commitment to expansion and connectivity. The airline now operates to 16 destinations in the region including Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Kyrgyzstan, Macedonia, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Turkmenistan and Ukraine.

flydubai’s GCC network is also the largest of all Middle Eastern carriers, with 265 flights per week to Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar and Saudi Arabia.

Now the second-largest airline operating out of Dubai International Airport, flydubai’s impressive year-on-year growth figures have been driven by its rapidly expanding network and fleet. New figures highlighting its remarkable development include:

  • 285% growth in passenger numbers from the CIS and CEE markets in 2012 compared to 2011, plus a 114% increase in the number of flights over the same period.
  • 65% growth in passenger numbers from the GCC in 2012 compared to 2011, and a 36% growth in the number of flights over the same period.

Speaking during the busy month-long Dubai Shopping Festival, DEPE’s CEO, Laila Suhail, said: “Dubai has established itself as one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world, offering visitors a variety of attractions and experiences including shopping offers, family entertainment, cultural events, international sport tournaments, music festivals, and much more. The emergence of Dubai as a global landmark of excellence in tourism and events was recognized when it was awarded twice in a row as the ‘World Festival and Event City 2011 and 2012’ by the International Festivals and Events Association. This recognition came as a result to the close partnerships we have  with the private sector to ensure that Dubai offers tourists from around the world the best holiday experience by creating a premier platform for all that makes their holiday in Dubai a memorable one.”

Hamad Bin Mejren, Executive Director, Business Tourism, DTCM, said: “flydubai has been vital in helping promote tourism in Dubai, especially in key areas such as the CIS, CEE and the GCC markets. Tourist numbers from these areas grow each year; a fact that is undoubtedly driven by growth in airline connectivity.”

flydubai’s CEO, further commented: “Our vision has always been to open up new markets and give more people the opportunity to travel affordably, granting them direct access to Dubai’s commercial and tourism opportunities, as well as the chance to explore beyond Dubai an array of exciting destinations on our network. The UAE’s encouraging environment has definitely been the key to the success of our vision. We would not have been able to become the world’s fastest start-up airline, if it hadn’t been to one of the fastest growing cities in the region, and possibly the world.”

flydubai operates a growing fleet of 28 Boeing 737-800 aircraft, to cater to increasing demand from both the business and leisure passengers across its route map.