Jeddah airport jam-packed with Umrah performers

Wednesday, February 6, 2019

By Dhikra Alsolami

Okaz/Saudi Gazette

JEDDAH – Passengers traveling from the South Terminal of King Abdulaziz International Airport in Jeddah have said the long and patient wait in the jam-packed airport lounges to board the flights is exhausting them.

Okaz/Saudi Gazette met with the airport’s Director General Essam Fuad Anwar to find out the reasons of the flight delays and the subsequent crowding of the airport lounges. He said there were actually no delays, but the large Umrah traffic around this time of the year was the reason for the crowding at the airport.

“This time every year, the lounges get overcrowded with Umrah performers because it is the peak season when the number of visitors increases and the number of flights from and to KAIA rises dramatically. The airport management is making all efforts to improve the level of services and provide passengers with all possible facilities to ensure their comfort and safety. More airport officers and equipment are placed at the arrival and departure lounges to expedite the processing of travel documents,” he explained.

The airport management and government authorities work together to finalize the formalities as quickly as possible to clear the crowds of passengers waiting in the lounges, he said.

According to Anwar, the airport is currently operating flights three times its capacity. On Tuesday morning alone, 113 flights took off from KAIA carrying around 20,000 passengers, he said, adding that the total number of passengers handled by all KAIA terminals reached 100,000 a day.

KAIA receives up to 100,000 passengers a day