Dubai International Airport (DXB) has recorded 29.1 million passengers in 2021, thereby retaining its top spot among the world’s busiest international airports.

This marks a year-on-year (YOY) rise of 12.7%, helping the airport secure the highest rank for the eighth year in a row.

Passenger traffic at the airport was more than half a million than originally anticipated.

Growth was particularly high in the final quarter of 2021 with 11.8 million passengers.

It was the first time since the onset of Covid-19 that quarterly passenger volume breached the ten-million level.

With traffic of 4.5 million passengers, December was the busiest month in 2021.

Passenger volume is projected to reach 55.1 million by the end of 2022.

Flight movements at DXB reached 77,671 in Q4 2021, with 233,375 annual flight movements, a 28.1% increase from the prior year.

In the last three months of 2021, DXB recorded 614,834t of cargo, resulting in a 20% surge in the annual freight volume to 2,319,185t.

DXB CEO Paul Griffiths said: “Despite unprecedented turmoil affecting millions of people all over the world, we overcame many serious obstacles to the operation of the world’s largest international hub and provided smooth, comfortable and safe travel for millions of people travelling through DXB.

“This incredible performance by all of our staff and stakeholders was achieved in the face of abruptly changing travel regulations and concerns about new waves of infection.

“Despite these serious challenges to our ongoing success, we managed to exceed our own forecasts and continue to retain our crown as the world’s busiest international airport.”