Posted by: englishdubai | October 15, 2008

Terminal Skies


A regular two day trip this week to Qatar led to an experience to remember. Yesterday marked the opening of the new Terminal Three at Dubai International. This terminal will be for Emirates Airlines only and they have implemented a phased opening with only regional flights operating there this week.

After exiting the red eye flight from Doha I was surprised to see that we were in the new terminal. The single word to describe it is simply HUGE. My colleague and I were a little sceptical about the transit through and thought we might have a very long walk back through terminal one – this was not the case.

Soon we arrived at wealth of immigration desks, with no other flights around we were through in a flash:

The luggage hall like the rest of terminal three is very spacious and an army of porters were keen for business. I think they had not seen a flight in some time:

Below is a picture of the the cavernous luggage hall. It is so large there are actually two moving walkways:

And the biggest surprise was upon leaving the terminal the red carpet had been laid out to usher me to a fleet of waiting taxis:

Now any regular traveller knows that between arriving between 12am-2am at Dubai airport often means a lengthy wait for a cab – however last night was a real treat.

As a regular Emirates traveller I welcome the new terminal. It somehow captures Dubai – hugely ambitious, vast in size and all shiny and new. While I am sure it will have it hiccups as it moves up to full operational capacity, I am sure they will have looked at the disastrous opening of Terminal Five at Heathrow and picked up some sharply observed lessons.

My last thought as I settled into the cab for the ride back to the Marina was just how big will Emirates Airlines grow to fully utilize such a vast facility? The answer probably starts with the word very.


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