Abu Dhabi International Airport

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Abu Dhabi International Airport is the gateway to the city of Abu Dhabi, the capital of the United Arab Emirates. It is reputed to be one of the fastest growing airports in the world and it is the second largest airport in the United Arab Emirates. This airport which was opened in 1968 was then called Al Bateen Airport and was located within the city of Abu Dhabi itself. Development and space constraints forced the airport to be shifted to the present location which is about 32 kms. from the city.

Abu Dhabi International AirportThe Abu Dhabi International Airport has a donut-shaped passenger terminal equipped with telescopic boarding walkways. This saves you the trouble of walking through long and endless corridors. The world –famed Abu Dhabi Duty Free Shop which has twice won the Best Travel Retailer in the Middle East Award is located in the passenger terminal. The airport has two runways that are about 4.1 km. long, 2 cargo terminals, 12 gates, 5 baggage claim belts, and 24 aircraft stands. The Abu Dhabi International Airport which contains 36 check-in counters accommodates 40 passenger airlines serving 90 destinations. The airport has handled over 9 million passengers last year.

The Abu Dhabi International Airport is managed by the Abu Dhabi Civil Aviation Department and maintained by Abu Dhabi Airport Services. The airport has a Check-in-facility in Abu Dhabi city, called the City Terminal. This facility permits passengers to check in their luggage and obtain a boarding pass. This reduces or eliminates the waiting time for the passengers at the airport.

Transportation from the Abu Dhabi International Airport to the city is made available by means of taxi, car rental, or by bus. Taxi fare is around US$ 18 while a bus ride would cost you US$ 1. Car rental charges vary from US$ 24.00 to US$ 188.00 depending on the type of car you wish to have.

The Abu Dhabi International Airport has a five star hotel - Abu Dhabi Airport Hotel - with 40 rooms. The guests can avail the comforts of a VIP lounge, a restaurant, a bar, a children’s play room, a health club with massage parlors, sauna, and gym. The hotel also boasts of an all-equipped Business Centre for conducting your business.

The Government of Abu Dhabi has started an all round development drive for the development of Abu Dhabi’s tourism, business and boosting foreign investment. A master plan has commenced to make Abu Dhabi International Airport a world-class facility. In the long term needs, the master plan envisages handling of 40 million passengers per year. The airport proposes to handle 20 million passengers per year by the end of 2011. It also proposes to open a third terminal capable of handling an additional five million passengers by the end of the year. A new cargo terminal is expected to be completed by the end of 2010.

The present development taking place in Abu Dhabi International Airport is Phase 1 of the 5.9 million square feet terminal that will have 42 gates and is expected to cater to an additional 20 million passengers a year. This phase is likely to be completed by 2012. Ultimately, there would be more than 90 gates at the Abu Dhabi International Airport and it is likely to handle more than 50 million passengers and more than 2 million tons of cargo per year.