Abu Dhabi: Abu Dhabi International Airport (AUH) has put in place a range of initiatives that will ensure the smooth and safe passage of pilgrims through the airport during the forthcoming Hajj season. Among these are measures to safeguard pilgrims’ health and security.
In order to handle the four extra Etihad Airways’ flights (chartered specifically for Hajj), along with Saudi Arabian Airlines’ scheduled flights to Mecca and Medina, dedicated check-in counters have been put in place. Opposite these counters, space has been allocated to the Ministry of Health to provide pilgrims with personal Hajj kits and safety booklets, and a fully equipped Hajj clinic has been established in Terminal 1 to tackle any emergency diagnosis or treatment of pilgrims, should the need arise.
In collaboration with the General Authority of Islamic Affairs and Endowments (GAIAE), several Mufties will be available at the airport to assist pilgrims, attend to their queries, and advise them on religious and Hajj matters.
In addition, AUH has worked closely with all its stakeholders such as airport police, Immigration and Customs departments, to provide a hassle-free airport experience for all passengers. Pilgrims will also be offered free food and beverage vouchers to enjoy at Abu Dhabi Duty Free while they wait to board their flights to Saudi Arabia.
Commenting on the arrangements for the holy pilgrimage, Dr. Matar Rashed Al Darmaki, Chief Executive Officer at SEHA said: “We would like to extend every support to pilgrims to ensure that their journey is comfortable. We have made the necessary arrangements to deploy additional staff at the dedicated clinic to ensure that anyone who requires medical assistance is dealt with swiftly and efficiently.”
Mohammed Al Katheeri, Acting Chief Operations Officer at Abu Dhabi Airports said: “It is an honor to provide support to pilgrims as they embark upon their journey from Abu Dhabi International Airport to Saudi Arabia. Hajj is a highly significant occasion that can also be physically demanding. We hope that the measures we have undertaken at the airport will help minimize the stress of travel for those taking part in this religious trip. We wish them a safe and peaceful pilgrimage and look forward to welcoming them back on their return.”
The airport is also implementing special arrival procedures to handle pilgrims returning from Saudi Arabia with Zamzam water.
About Abu Dhabi Airports:
Abu Dhabi Airports is a public joint-stock company wholly owned by the Abu Dhabi Government. It was incorporated by Amiri Decree number 5, issued on 4 March 2006, to spearhead the development of the Emirate’s aviation infrastructure. In September 2006, Abu Dhabi Airports assumed responsibility for the operation and management of Abu Dhabi and Al Ain International Airports. In 2008, Abu Dhabi Airports added Al Bateen Executive Airport (an exclusive business aviation airport), as well as Sir Bani Yas and Delma Island Airports to its portfolio. These airports are geared to serve the various segments of air travellers, the aviation marketplace, and will help contribute to Abu Dhabi’s development as a destination for both business and leisure tourism.
Currently under way is the multi-billion dollar re-development and expansion of Abu Dhabi International Airport designed to increase the overall capacity of the airport to more than 45 million passengers per year. As part of this redevelopment, a second runway and a third terminal have been completed.