'Private corridor': Dubai airport sets up special check-in, immigration counters for Haj pilgrims

Pilgrims will not get stuck in the peak travel rush ahead of Eid Al Adha break and summer vacation

by

Sahim Salim

/

Waad Barakat

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Published: Mon 10 Jun 2024, 11:32 AM

Last updated: Wed 12 Jun 2024, 8:15 AM

A special private corridor has been set up for Haj pilgrims flying out of Dubai for the annual Islamic pilgrimage, a top official has said.

With dedicated counters for check-in and passport control, and special departure gates, pilgrims will not get stuck in the peak travel rush that Dubai experiences ahead of the Eid Al Adha break and summer vacation.


Mohammad Al Marzouqi, head of the Haj Committee at Dubai Airports, told Khaleej Times: "From the moment they enter the airport building, Haj pilgrims have a private corridor till they reach their departure gates.”

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Airlines that operate Haj flights requested special departure gates nearly two months back. "Each airline has a dedicated terminal and a designated area. For example, some passengers will travel from Terminal 3, area 3; while Saudi Airlines will depart from Terminal 1, area 6; and Flynas from Terminal 1, area 4,” the official explained.

Photo: Supplied
Photo: Supplied

To ensure that pilgrims from around the world are given the chance to perform Haj, Saudi Arabia specifies quotas for countries. Over 6,200 Haj pilgrims will fly out of the UAE, of which 4,600 will travel from the Dubai International Airport (DXB). Expats have to go through the quota and procedures of their home countries. Over 100,000 expatriate pilgrims will transition through DXB, the official added.

Haj— the annual Islamic pilgrimage — will start on June 14. UAE residents will get a public holiday on June 15-18 to mark Islam’s holiest day — Arafat Day — and Islamic holiday Eid Al Adha. The extended weekend will see several residents fly out of Dubai for a brief vacation.

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Al Marzouqi urged Haj pilgrims to reach the airport at least four hours prior to their scheduled departure time. "There they … will undergo blood pressure and sugar testing. We have experts from the health authorities to advise them what to expect during their pilgrimage. Additionally, we will be distributing umbrellas and water bottles."

Pilgrims need to carry their passports, Haj permit and vaccination cards, he added.

The official stressed the importance of pilgrims thoroughly checking their documents and travel details before arriving at the airport. He advised them to remain hydrated during the pilgrimage. Weather experts in Saudi Arabia had earlier said that pilgrims would experience average high temperatures of 44℃ during the Haj.

The first return flight will arrive in DXB on June 19.

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