Eid Al Adha in Dubai: Travellers facing heavy rush at airport even before school holidays

Travel agents say outbound travel rush started on June 1 with heavy rush over weekends


Nasreen Abdulla

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Published: Mon 12 Jun 2023, 6:00 AM

Last updated: Mon 12 Jun 2023, 8:37 PM

Residents and visitors in Dubai faced long queues and delays at airports over the weekend as the travelling season has started, despite schools still continuing in full swing.

Mini R., who flew to the UK with her family over the weekend, said she faced longer-than-expected delays. “I have young kids. So, we usually like to reach the airport early to leave us enough time after check-in,” she said.

“However, the lines were so long that we got to the lounge just in time for boarding. I couldn’t believe how crowded the airport was, despite schools still being open.”

According to Dubai’s Knowledge and Human Development Authority (KHDA) calendar, school holidays in Dubai will only begin after two weeks, with some schools closing as late as July 7.

Salman Ali, who dropped his parents to Dubai airport to travel to Karachi on Sunday morning, said it was very crowded. “My parents had come visiting me and they were returning,” he said. “They were scheduled to go on Saturday, but their flight got cancelled. So, on Sunday morning when I went to drop them, I was not expecting such a rush because schools are still on. I was shocked to see how crowded it was.”


According to travel agents, the travel season began on June 1, with heavy rush over the weekends. “We are advising people to arrive at the airport early and expect delays, especially during the weekends,” said Nousad Hassan from Alhind Business Center. “This rush is expected to continue throughout the month and will peak by June 23 weekend when people who want to celebrate Eid outside the UAE will travel. It is also on the weekend when a lot of Indian schools will close so we are expecting that weekend to be very busy.”

Noushad further elaborated that the outward travel will continue until July 31. “From August onwards we are expecting inward travel,” he said. “That will continue until end of September.”

Praveen Chowdhary from Saffron Travel and Tourism also said that outbound travel rush has begun. “We find that a lot of people are travelling to the Indian subcontinent this month as soon as exams finished,” he said.

However, he noted that the travel trends change towards the Eid vacation. “From June 26 onwards, we have received a lot of bookings for Singapore and the European sector,” he said. “It looks like people are preferring to first visit their native countries and then deciding to go on a holiday.”

Astronomical calculations suggest that residents are in for a six-day weekend to celebrate Eid Al Adha. The break is likely to be from Tuesday, June 27, to Sunday, July 2.

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