Guide to Al Maktoum International Airport Dubai

Guide to Al Maktoum International Airport Dubai

Dubai is easily one of the top tourist destinations in the world, becoming synonymous with glamor and luxury. With its iconic skyscrapers, luxurious shopping malls, and pristine beaches, Dubai offers visitors a unique blend of modernity and tradition. The city's diverse culinary scene and vibrant nightlife also contribute to its appeal as a must-visit destination for travelers seeking a luxurious experience.

Though the city is massive, you only have two entry points: Dubai International Airport and Al Maktoum International Airport. The Dubai International Airport, or DXB Airport for short, is known as the world's busiest airport, gathering millions of passengers yearly from all around the globe. In fact, in 2023 alone, the airport had almost 87 million passengers.

Similarly, Al Maktoum Airport is newly the hottest spot to touchdown at. With state-of-the-art facilities and a strategic location closer to new developments in the city, Al Maktoum Airport is quickly becoming a popular choice for travelers visiting Dubai.

Here's everything you need to know about Al Maktoum International Airport!

About Al Maktoum International Airport

Al Maktoum Airport, also known as Dubai World Central (DWC), is a major international airport located in Jebel Ali, Dubai. The airport was first announced in 2004 and construction began in 2007. After several delays, the airport finally opened for cargo operations in 2010, and in 2013, it started serving passengers. Al Maktoum Airport has a current capacity of around 26 million passengers per year, but this is expected to increase to 130 million once all phases of the airport's expansion are completed.

Al Maktoum Airport is a key part of Dubai's ambitious plans to become a major global aviation hub. With ongoing expansion plans and increasing popularity among airlines, the airport is poised to become the biggest in the world in terms of passenger traffic. The airport's expansion plans include the construction of new terminals, additional runways, and other support facilities.


Al Maktoum International Airport is located South of Dubai – in Jebel Ali to be specific. It is the main part of Dubai World Central, a planned residential, commercial, and logistics complex. This strategic location allows the airport to serve as a major hub for both passengers and cargo, connecting Dubai to various destinations around the world.

How to get there

The airport, though far away, is very easy to get to via public transportation. You can start by taking the Dubai Metro Red Line to Ibn Battuta Mall. From there, you can hop on the F55 RTA Bus that heads straight to the airport. If you're going by car or taxi, the easiest road is Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed Road (E311). Additionally, you can catch a free shuttle bus ride from Dubai International Airport to Al Maktoum International Airport every 30 minutes.


Of course, with its massive plans to become the biggest airport in the world, Al Maktoum Airport is going to have numerous facilities to accommodate passengers during the long layovers. Aside from the basic washrooms and prayer rooms, you can find a bunch of places to shop and eat at the airport.


Al Maktoum International Airport offers a variety of dining options for travelers to choose from. If you're in the mood for a quick bite or a sit-down meal before your flight, you'll find a range of cafes, restaurants, and a food court to choose from. From fast food chains like McDonald's to gourmet eateries, there's something for everyone. You can grab a juicy burger, a crispy pizza, or even a sushi roll. And of course, if you need a caffeine fix, then you can find a bunch of cafes that have got you covered with a selection of hot and iced beverages. So sit back, relax, and enjoy a meal before takeoff at Al Maktoum International Airport.


Stop by the airport's Duty-Free shop for all your travel essentials. Whether you need snacks, toiletries, souvenirs, or electronics, you're sure to find what you're looking for at tax-free prices.

The Duty-Free shop is conveniently located inside the airport terminal, so you won't have to travel far to get everything you need. And since it's open 24/7, you can shop at any time of the day or night, regardless of your flight schedule.

One of the best things about shopping at the Duty-Free store is the variety of products available. You can choose from a wide range of fragrances, cosmetics, chocolates, and other luxury items that you might not find elsewhere. Plus, you can save money on all of them since they're tax-free. If you're looking for souvenirs or gifts to bring back home, the Duty-Free shop also has you covered.

Fun Facts

Some interesting things you may not have known about the airport include:

  • By 2030, Al Maktoum International Airport is projected to become the biggest airport in the world.
  • The airport has four runways– that's double the amount at DXB airport!
  • Al Maktoum Airport is going to be connected with the already-existing Dubai Intl. Airport
  • The airport has a projected cargo capacity of 12 million tonnes, which is too big of a number to even scale!
  • Not only that but the flights are projected to reach a volume of 160 million passengers, 20 times more than the cargo.

What's Around

Though the area is far from all the city's bustle, it's not to be underestimated! Jebel Ali is Dubai's hidden gem. The area has malls, and theme parks, and holds the iconic Expo City.

Ibn Battuta Mall

Ibn Battuta Mall is the world's largest themed mall in the world, which was inspired by the Moroccan explorer of the same name. The mall has various courts, all inspired by a stop of Ibn Battuta's, from Egypt to Persia. The venue also features over 270 shops, 50 restaurants, and a 21-screen cinema, making it the perfect place to spend the day and immerse yourself in different cultural experiences from around the world. With its unique design and diverse range of offerings, Ibn Battuta Mall provides visitors with a truly unforgettable shopping and entertainment experience.


  • From 10:00 AM to 10:00 PM on Sunday to Thursday
  • From 10:00 AM to 12:00 AM on Friday and Saturday

Expo City

Expo City is definitely one of the most iconic and historic events to happen in Dubai recently. Expo 2020 was a massive event showcasing innovative technology and cultural diversity. With nearly 200 pavilions representing different countries, it was an unforgettable and educational experience for all ages. The event ended in March 2022, but the venue still lives as Expo City.

The area continues to attract visitors with its stunning architecture, world-class amenities, and vibrant atmosphere. Though some of the well-loved pavilions are no longer there, you can find countless restaurants and shops that offer a taste of the diverse cultures showcased at Expo 2020.

Timings: 24/7

Dubai Parks & Resorts

Dubai Parks and Resorts is a massive resort that welcomes millions of visitors each year, both tourists and residents alike. Covering an area of over 25 million square feet, this venue has plenty to offer, including theme parks and European-style boardwalks. With more than 100 rides and attractions, there's something for everyone to enjoy!

The three theme parks at Dubai Parks and Resorts are Motiongate Dubai, Bollywood Parks Dubai, and Legoland Dubai. Each park offers a unique experience, from thrilling roller coasters to live entertainment shows. Whether you're a fan of movies, music, or Lego bricks, there's no shortage of fun at this world-class destination.

Timings: From 10:00 AM to 11:00 PM

Last Exit DXB Bound

The Last Exit is a unique destination that stands out among the many spots in the city. It is a bustling hub of activity that offers a wide range of street food, each with a unique flavor and aroma that will tantalize your taste buds.

Whether you want a quick snack or a full meal, the food trucks here have got you covered with their diverse menu options. From savory to sweet, vegetarian to meat-based, there is something for everyone. The atmosphere is also lively and vibrant, making it an ideal place to hang out with friends or family.

Timings: 24/7

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