The RCU announced plans for a new airport terminal in October 2023. Credit: RCU.
The new terminal will have a five-star hotel, a spa, and an extensive set of retailers. Credit: RCU.
The new terminal at AlUla International Airport is anticipated to significantly increase the airport's annual passenger capacity from 400,000 to six million. Credit: Egis.

AlUla International Airport, also known as Prince Abdulmajeed bin Abdulaziz Domestic Airport, is located 25km south-east of AlUla, Saudi Arabia, and became an international airport in March 2021.

Serving as a gateway to north-west Arabia, it contributes to the country’s comprehensive rehabilitation.

The Royal Commission for AlUla (RCU) launched the AlUla airport development project in August 2019.

The first phase of the project was completed in the same year while the second phase was completed in July 2020, which increased the airport’s passenger handling capacity from 100,000 to 400,000 a year.

In October 2023, the RCU unveiled its plans for the construction of a new airport terminal to increase the annual passenger capacity from 400,000 to six million while also enhancing the passenger experience with luxurious amenities and massive retail spaces.

AlUla airport development project details

Phase one of the AlUla airport development project involved expansion of the airport to accommodate additional aircraft. Also included were new digital information systems in the arrival and departure halls and redesigned internal and external areas for both halls.

The second phase involved the renovation of the airport’s main terminal building and an expansion of the apron to make room for six Code C and four Code E aircraft stands. The expansion also involved two additional connections to the runway and an extra 150,000m2 of taxiways.

A VIP lounge terminal was also constructed using locally sourced materials, reflecting the natural beauty of AlUla and its rich history, including a variety of other features to enhance the passenger experience.

The finished airside works, including aprons and taxiways, will enable seamless support for the airport’s 15,000 aeroplane movements a year. The expansion also serves as an important milestone for the airport’s need to cater to the more than two million visitors that are expected to visit AlUla in 2035 and beyond.

New terminal design and features

The new terminal serves as an exceptional entrance point to AlUla, one of the most renowned archaeological and cultural sites in the kingdom. It will also be a fusion of modernism, culture, and nature.

Its design emphasises the blending in of infrastructure with the natural environment of the region to create a harmonious environment.

The terminal will include a five-star hotel, a spa, and a wide selection of retail shops, to set new standards for international airport experiences.

Private aircraft hangar

In November 2022, the RCU opened a new hangar at AlUla International Airport for private aircraft, which was the first of its kind in the kingdom.

The RCU signed an agreement with Saudia Private, a private charter services company, in October 2023 to take over operations and management of the private aviation hangar.

The 3,000m2 hangar is designed to meet clean energy standards and has the capacity to hold aircraft of various sizes. The hangar is also equipped with all-ground flight personnel and engineering crews and offers long-term parking services.

The state-of-the-art private aviation hangar can accommodate VVIP guests arriving at AlUla on a variety of medium and small private aircraft.

Apart from handling personal aircraft of various sizes, the private hangar offers loading services for up to 16 passengers per heavy aircraft.

Contractors involved

Egis, a multidisciplinary engineering and operations company, was awarded two contracts in May 2023 for the development of a new private terminal for the airport’s private hangar.

The scope of work included the expansion of the existing hangar, the provision of necessary storage, maintenance and operations space, and the development of a new purpose-built fixed base operator terminal building.

The RCU appointed Capsule Arts, a full-service art consultancy, to serve as the airport’s art consultant.