King Abdulaziz International Airport Achieves Top Places in 2023 ACI Rankings

King Abdulaziz International Airport gets crowned as one of the most advanced airports in air connectivity in the Middle East - SPA
King Abdulaziz International Airport gets crowned as one of the most advanced airports in air connectivity in the Middle East - SPA
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King Abdulaziz International Airport Achieves Top Places in 2023 ACI Rankings

King Abdulaziz International Airport gets crowned as one of the most advanced airports in air connectivity in the Middle East - SPA
King Abdulaziz International Airport gets crowned as one of the most advanced airports in air connectivity in the Middle East - SPA

King Abdulaziz International Airport (KAIA) was crowned one of the most advanced airports in air connectivity in the Middle East by the Airports Council International (ACI).
During ACI's annual General Assembly Conference and Exhibition in Riyadh, KAIA placed third as the best airport in the field of air connectivity in the Middle East for 2023, SPA reported.
These results are an extension of the ongoing efforts of the Jeddah Airports Company, which manages and operates KAIA in using the latest technology, developing the infrastructure of the Kingdom's founder’s airport, upgrading the quality of services, and expanding the network of local and international air destinations to more than 125.
As part of its endeavor to achieve the national strategic objectives of civil aviation emanating from the Saudi Vision 2030, the Jeddah Airports Company continues to strengthen the position of KAIA as a global hub airport, and to provide a unique travel experience for all travelers, including tourists and visitors to the Grand Mosque of Makkah from around the world, with the airport achieving a record growth in operations of over 36%.

The airport also aims to increase the number of destinations to 135 by the end of 2024, achieving a growth of 6% compared to 2023.
Jeddah Airports Company CEO Eng. Mazen Johar unveiled the company's intention to upgrade the level of services to realize the goals of the National Transport and Logistics Strategy, which aims to increase operational efficiency and raise the capacity of KAIA to reach 114 million passengers by 2030.



Lebanon Tourism Season Revives Economic Outlook

People are seen at the arrival lounge at Beirut International Airport, Lebanon. (Asharq Al-Awsat)
People are seen at the arrival lounge at Beirut International Airport, Lebanon. (Asharq Al-Awsat)
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Lebanon Tourism Season Revives Economic Outlook

People are seen at the arrival lounge at Beirut International Airport, Lebanon. (Asharq Al-Awsat)
People are seen at the arrival lounge at Beirut International Airport, Lebanon. (Asharq Al-Awsat)

The surge in visitors to Lebanon during Eid al-Adha and high demand for summer concert bookings are boosting hopes for a revival in tourism.

This sector is crucial for reigniting positive economic growth after about nine months of challenging conditions due to the Gaza war and subsequent border clashes between Hezbollah and Israel in southern Lebanon.

Contrary to earlier fears this month of possible Israeli strikes inside Lebanon, Ali Hamieh, caretaker Minister of Public Works and Transport, reported a daily average of 14,000 arrivals at Beirut’s Rafic Hariri International Airport, with numbers on the rise.

Jean Abboud, President of the Association of Travel and Tourism Agents, confirmed that despite initial concerns, booking rates have bounced back to 90-95% after Israeli threats of a mid-month strike. Most arrivals are Lebanese expatriates and foreign workers.

Before the summer season’s anticipated surge, Lebanon saw a 5.37% decrease in arrivals, with air traffic down by 9.34% and passenger numbers at Beirut International Airport dropping by 6.84% in the first five months of this year, totaling 2.29 million travelers compared to 2.46 million last year.

These declines were linked to the border clashes.

Lebanon’s tourism sector, generating over $5 billion annually in recent years, ranks as the country’s second most vital revenue stream after expatriate remittances, which officially approach $7 billion.

Together, they contribute more than half of Lebanon’s national income, which has dropped sharply from about $55 billion to under $22 billion due to the ongoing financial and currency crises that erupted five years ago.

Despite significant losses during peak tourism seasons like Christmas, Easter, and Eid al-Fitr, a report by Bank Audi indicated that Lebanon’s tourism revenues lost over $1 billion in the first six months of the Gaza conflict, driven by a 24% drop in tourist arrivals.

On average, tourists spend around $3,000 during their stay in Lebanon.